For the 30th edition of Novel Food, I opted to make chamomile tea scones. I wasn’t sure I was going to make a recipe by the deadline for this edition of Novel Food. The move, the new job, and so on, have cut into both reading and blogging time. Fortunately, I had a bit of a break this weekend and had the bonus day off on the 4th of July, so have been catching up on a lot of things, including reading and cooking. One of my favorite “cute” mystery series is Laura Childs’s tea shop series, featuring intrepid heroine Theodosia Browning. I adore Theodosia, with her blue eyes and her unruly auburn hair. She has a great dog (Earl Grey) and runs a perfect little tea shop in Charleston, SC. And of course, she keeps running into dead bodies and has to lend a hand to the local law enforcement to figure out whodunnit.
Yep – these books are a bit contrived. But they are an awesome palate cleanser to what I’ve been reading lately: Jo Nesbo’s latest featuring poor Harry Hole, who can be pretty despondent; the most recent JD Robb, filled with a fair amount of violence; and a paperback by Kate Slaughter – also kind of dark. It was definitely time for a little break, so I bought the two most recent Laura Childs’s paperbacks: Devonshire Scream and Ming Tea Murder. My inspiration for my chamomile tea scones actually comes from Devonshire Scream. In addition to running a great tea shop, Theodosia employees a spectacular baking chef named Haley, who keeps whipping up the most divine scones. Between scones and tea, I couldn’t help eyeing my lovely chamomile crop out in the garden and thinking, hmm, what could I make?
These chamomile tea scones are light and fruity. They make use of the whole chamomile flower, and if you are like me, and a bit too lazy to dry them for tea, make great use of an edible flower. Plus, they would be great being served aside a cup of tea – chamomile or other.
Now, I generally don’t share candid behind the scene photos on my blog posts, but couldn’t resist sharing what I’m calling the cat catastrophe.
First photo there is a shot of me trying to set up the scene to photo these scones. Initially, I only had one cat helping (not unusual). But then, our ancient calico, Carmen, decided she needed to supervise. Supervision meant sitting observing from the cat tree. And then it involved sniffing the chamomile. Which then led to attacking the chamomile, getting a claw hung up in the napkin, and knocking over the tea cup and drenching everything. Really – not helpful. I mopped it all up and started over. Fortunately, the chamomile tea scones were all unharmed. The cat was totally unashamed. She sashayed over to the couch and finished supervising.
- 2 1/3 cups flour
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup butter
- ½ cup milk
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons sour cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/3 cup finely chopped chamomile flowers
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- In a medium bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Cut the butter into slices. Add the butter into the dry mixture and either use a pastry cutter or your hands to incorporate the butter until it forms pea size chunks. Add the milk, egg, sour cream and vanilla and gently incorporate until all the flour/butter mixture is wet and sticks together in a shaggy dough. Add the chopped chamomile flowers and gently incorporate.
- Turn the dough out onto a parchment lined baking sheet and form into a circle. Cut the dough into twelve pieces that radiate out from the middle of the circle. Gently separate each piece – you want just a bit of space between each scone so that they can rise.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the tops of the scones are golden brown.
- Makes 12. Enjoy!
This recipe is linked up to Novel Food #30. Hop on over to check out all the great literature inspired recipes.
This post is also linked up to Treat Petite for July 2017.