Petite Vanilla Scones

I’ve found the vegan baking version of caviar. Know what it is? The seeds from the vanilla bean. Pure, sweet bliss it is. It doesn’t hurt that vanilla is one of my all-time favorite flavors anyways – and those little teensy seeds are the reason why. Ok ok, chocolate comes in a very close second. Right now though it’s all about the vanilla.

All hail the vanilla bean. *bows down before the bean of light*

So I made vanilla scones. Not just plain vanilla scones, but vanilla BEAN scones. Just so you know, you’re going to want to rush out to the store and buy a buttload of vanilla beans just so you can make these over and over again. Then afterwards, while your waiting for the glaze to harden, pour yourself a sweet, crisp glass of wine. If you don’t drink wine then pour yourself a tall glass of whatever makes you feel cool and groovy. I did and I’m a happy girl.

Bake. Eat. Enjoy.

Petite Vanilla Scones

adapted from The Pioneer Woman

For the scones:

3 cups flour

2/3 cup sugar

5 tsp baking powder

1/2 pound of Earth Balance – chilled (very important)

1/4 cup vanilla soy yogurt (I prefer WholeSoy)

3/4 cups vanilla soy creamer (or regular if you can’t find vanilla)

1 1/2 whole vanilla beans (2 if you’re using regular soy creamer)

For the Glaze:

3 cups powdered sugar

1/2 cup soy milk

1 whole vanilla bean

3/4 tsp vanilla extract

dash of salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

For the scone:

Split the vanilla beans down the middle lengthwise and scrape the vanilla “caviar” inside.Stir into the soy creamer and set aside for 15 minutes.

In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, sugar and baking powder.

Cut in the cold Earth Balance either with a pastry cutter or two knives. Continue until it resembles a crumb.

Pour the vanilla cream into the dry ingredients and mix together gently with a fork until it comes together.

Take the dough and turn it onto a floured surface. Use your hands to mix the dough together – it will be very soft. If it’s too moist, add flour. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough into a rectangle about 1/2 to 3/4”  thick. Use your hands to help form the dough if necessary.

Use a pizza cutter or knife to cut the dough into a symmetrical rectangle then cut the rectangle into 12 symmetrical rectangles. Then cut those squares/rectangles in half diagonally so they become two triangles. Unless you’re like me and make triangles of every different size possible because you’re too lazy to measure them out – see below.

Transfer the triangles to a parchment lines cookie sheet and bake for about 18 minutes. You want to take them out just before they turn golden. Let them cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then transfer them to a cooling rack.

For the glaze:

Split the vanilla bean in half lengthwise and scrape out the “caviar”. Stir into the milk. Let the milk sit for 10 minutes.

Whisk in the powdered sugar until there are no lumps and the glaze is a good consistency. Whisk in the vanilla extract.

One by one, dunk the top of each cooled scone into the glaze. Transfer to a wire rack. Let the scones set for at least a half an hour before eating (you want the glaze to be hard on the baked good.

By the way, this is Bob. Bob is my kitchen buddy. Everyone should have a kitchen buddy – they’re neat.

I just realized how badly my windowsill needs to be clean. Zoinks.

Chocolate Creme Sandwich Cookies

I made Oreos. You know, those little chocolate sandwich cookies that were made in heaven and dropped down next to a glass of soymilk for all to enjoy? Yeah those.

Why did I make them? I don’t know. Why is the sky blue? Ok, don’t answer that. Basically I had nothing better to do than bring together two yummy sugary components to make my teeth hurt and my taste buds happy. They’ll make yours happy too – I swear.

Chocolate Creme Sandwich Cookies (aka “Oreos”)

adapted from The Smitten Kitchen

For the cookie wafer:

1 1/4 cup flour

1/2 cup cocoa

1 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp baking powder

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup plus 2 tbs of Earth Balance

1 1/2 tsp of egg replacer

2 tbs brewed coffee – cooled

2 tbs water

For the filling:

1/4 cup room temperature Earth Balance

1/4 cup vegetable shortening

2 cups sifted confectioner’s sugar

2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Whisk together the Egg Replacer, coffee and water.

In a food processor, mix together the flour, cocoa, baking soda and powder, salt and sugar. While pulsing, add the Earth Balance and then the egg replacer mixture. Continue to process until dough begins to come together. You can tell it’s mixed when you squish some in your hand and it holds together well.

Take rounded teaspoons  and roll them into a ball in your hand. Place them on a parchment or silpat-lined baking sheet about 2 inches apart. When the baking sheet is filled, flatten each ball with the heel of your slightly moistened hand. Bake for 9 minutes, rotating once.  Set cookies on rack to cool.

For the filling: cream together on low speed, the butter and shortening. Gradually add the sugar and vanilla. Turn mixer to high for about 2 to 3 minutes and beat until light and fluffy.

To assemble: in a pastry bag with a 1/2” pastry tip, pipe teaspoon-size blobs of cream into the center of one cookies. Place another cookie of equal size on top. Continue with the rest of the cookies.

Enjoy with a very large glass of soymilk. :)

Long time no see!

Well hello there purdy people!

Things have been crazy for me lately – but in a completely cool and groovy way. This has been my life as of late:

Not sure if I mentioned it, but I’m currently attending culinary school for Baking and Pastry. I am really doing something I’ve thought about for a very long time. It’s a lot of hard work but I’m learning so much!

So now that I’ve finally learned to balance some things out, expect new, fandangled recipes and tips. I want to share what I learn! See you all later this week!

Je suis désolé

My apologies for not posting anything. It seems the video card on my computer has decided to crash on me. So now the only access I have to a computer is at work and then whatever I can take care of on my phone. I promise I will be back up and running soon!

Until then…happy eating!

Cornmeal Pancakes

What do you do at 2pm on a Friday afternoon? Make pancakes? Sure! Why not. It was either that or clean the house. As you can see, the pancakes won (cooking trumps vacuuming).

I decided to make pancakes after my failed attempt at Black & White cookies last night (no worries, I think I know what went wrong and I’ll have that up as soon as I can). I know the dough is supposed to be cake-like, but not flat and floppy. Not that these little circles of brown, sweet goodness are floppy. No, they hold their own perfectly.


These pancakes have a warm, earthy taste to them. Not overly sweet, the way pancakes can be sometimes. It gets its sweetness from the molasses – which is, well – awesome.

Make them for breakfast, make them for dinner. Just make them. They’re yummy.

Cornmeal Pancakes

adapted from epicurious.com

inspired by joy the baker

1 1/4 cup soymilk

1 1/3 tsp cream of tartar plus 2 tablespoons of soymilk

Egg replacement the equivalent of 1 egg

1 tbs dark molasses

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/4 cup Earth Balance, melted and slightly cooled

1 cup flour

1/8 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking soda

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 cup yellow cornmeal

In a small bowl, whisk together the cream of tartar and 2 tbs of soymilk. Add to 1 1/4 cups soymilk – whisk together and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking soda and baking powder.

In another small bowl whisk together egg replacment, soymilk mixture, vanilla and melted Earth Balance.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, stir to combine.

Add the cornmeal and stir until mixed (I use a whisk to get out the large lumps).

Drop 2 tbs of batter onto a hot, greased griddle or skillet.

Serve with syrup or your favorite pancake topping and enjoy!


Lemon Poppy Seed Cookies

Lemon loveliness on a beautiful Spring day.

Happy Bunny Day! Ostara, Spring Equinox, Easter – however you celebrate it. I hope your day of  celebrating is wonderful.

The weather today is beautiful. Extremely unseasonal for early April, but who’s complaining? I’m not that’s for sure. I was able to wear my pretty white dress and my open toe shoes and not feel like my legs are freezing off. Spring makes me happy. Now all I need is some grass to squish my toes with and I’ll be set.

I really think that lemon in a baked good is a gift from the gods. They knew it was good and had to pass it along to us somehow. Lemon and sugar plus butter (vegan of course) = heaven. You’re really going to want to bake these. Why? Because they’re damned good (yes, I said damned). Sweet and yummy and the lemon bites the back of your tongue in this amazing, sweet, zesty, shivery way.

Lemon Poppy Seed Cookies

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

3 1/2 tsp lemon zest (from 2 or 3 lemons)

1 cup Earth Balance

2 cups flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/8 tsp salt

1 1/2 cups sugar

Egg replacement equivalent of 1 egg

2 tsp pure vanilla extract

1 1/2 tbs poppy seeds. Extra for sprinkling.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

In a small saucepan, bring lemon juice to a simmer and cook until it’s reduce by almost half. Add 1/2 cup of Earth Balance. Blend until melted, then take off heat.

Stir together 1/2 cup of sugar and 1 1/2 tsp of lemon zest. With your hands, rub the lemon zest and sugar together until well combined. The sugar will start to become a very pale yellow. Set aside.

Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Cream the remaining Earth Balance and 1 cup of sugar together on medium speed in electric mixer with a paddle attachment (or on medium speed of a hand held mixer). Mix in egg replacer and lemon butter mixture until pale – about 2 or 3 minutes. Mix in vanilla and leftover lemon zest. Add flour and poppy seeds.

Roll spoonfuls of the cookie dough together to form 1 1/2 in balls (approximately); roll them in the sugar/lemon zest mixture. Place them about 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Press each ball with the bottom of a glass until it’s about 1/4 inch thick. Sprinkle lightly with poppy seeds.

Bake until browned around the bottom edges – about 10-12 minutes. Transfer to wire racks and let cool completely.

Mocha Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate and coffee. Such a wonderful combination don’t ya think? There is something so earthy about the two of them when they’re together that’s almost irresistible.

Try eating just one. Go ahead, I dare you.

I personally believe these cookies are best eaten next to a large glass of soymilk. mmmmm

Mocha Cinnamon Chocolate Chip Cookies

adapted from Best of Fine Cooking.com

2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

3/4 tsp ground cinnamon

1/8 tsp salt

1 1/2 cups Earth Balance, softened at room temperature

3 level tbs instant espresso powder (or 4 level tbs instant-coffee granules, crushed)

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

About 1/4 cup granulated sugar for dipping.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cooling racks with paper towels (this is a must).

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. In a larger bowl, beat the Earth Balance and espresso powder or coffee until well combined. Add the confectioners’ sugar and brown sugar and beat until combined. Stir in the flour mixture about 1/2 cup at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the chocolate chips.

Put the granulated sugar in a small, shallow bowl. Scoop out about 1 tablespoon dough and flatten it slightly into a disk. Dip one side into the granulated sugar and then set the disk, sugar side up, on an ungreased baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough, spacing the disks about 2 inches apart. Bake until the edges start to darken, 12 to 14 minutes. (begin checking after 12).

Let the cookies cool for 1 to 2 minutes on the baking sheets. Transfer them to the paper towel-lined racks to cool completely. Bake the rest the same way.

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