Chocolate and scones

It has been a while. Life has taken me various unexpected and expected places, but it was all way busier than I could have imagined.

There was Stephen’s dad’s 85th birthday. Cooking up a storm, I totally forgot to take pictures. Stephen’s sister and I jammed on the menu. I ended up making gazpacho, veggie sushi (did I mention we are vegetarians?), chocolate truffles (rosemary, lavender, and Chambord), 2 gluten free orange chocolate cakes, ginger apricot scones, and a huge fruit platter.

This scone recipe is my favorite. OK, I will admit right now that I have never even tried another scone recipe. These are too good. Not sweet at all. Just perfect. I stole the recipe online which is good for you because you can go and make them too. Click here. I use more ginger than the recipe asks for. I made the dough the evening before, by hand, because the in-laws did not have all the equipment that would have made making dough easier. When I realized that scones existed before kitchen-aids some confidence grew inside me. I just made a roundish shape and wrapped it in plastic, cut into 8 pieces the next morning, baked it and voila! If you want to read all about the Bi-Rite Market in San Francisco, go here.

A word about the chocolate truffles. I have been making them for years and as I often say: I can make them in my sleep. It is true. After massive heart attack, quadruple bypass surgery, and pulmonary embolism, the first thing I did after a 20 day hospital stay was fill a 100+ truffle order. Perhaps a bit crazy now that I look back, but very important to my psychological well being at the time. I digress, I wanted to comment on the flavors. Chambord, a very expensive raspberry liqueur, makes the most wonderful truffle filling, makes great ganache, and rounds out and enhances chocolate like nothing else. But lavender or rosemary combined with chocolate is equally amazing. It’s surprising one can’t find this mix more often.

Here is my chocolate recipe suggestion: get a pre-made sweet chocolate crust ready to be filled. Or perhaps you have a recipe already and make your own. I assume that any good chocolate cookie recipe will do. Bake, cool, or unwrap if you bought yours. If using the Trader Joe’s pound plus chocolate, and I highly recommend that brand, break off 22 squares. I know they are not really squares mathematically, but that’s the name we call them. Break them apart individually. Melt in microwave set to 50% for 2.34 minutes. Stir a little and do this again. If still not melted, try another minute at 50%. You can repeat this, but don’t go too far or the chocolate will seize and the chocolate gods and goddesses will not look kindly on you. Take 1 cup of heavy cream and heat in microwave. I do this 30 seconds at a time, two times is usually good enough. Stir into melted chocolate. All that is left, is 2 ounces of Chambord. Mix that in and pour into cool crust. You can pour this chocolate sauce through a strainer if you are the obsessive type. Place in fridge and let set. You are in for a treat!

I’ve also been struggling with incredible back pain. Long story, short: I’m on heavy duty ibuprofen and other pain meds and doing better. But for a while I was wondering. I could not even knit, that shows how serious the pain hit me. I can always knit, but apparently not.

Now excuse me while I go take some pictures of the latest dishcloths.

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