Welcome to 2016

A year, it’s been a year. A year ago my Aunt died in the most tragic of circumstances, a car accident, on a snowy road. And it wasn’t the only loss this year but thinking back the suddenness of it was shocking. Because of that, it makes this loss almost seem worse. What would it have been like when my Mom died if my Auntie had been there? There is so much more that I could say but I don’t really want to go down that rabbit hole.

And I don’t want to do that because she loved life. She’d want us to be happy and celebrate while we remember her and her life. So today I remember and tomorrow I celebrate.

For my own reasons I will be celebrating the New Year tomorrow also. That’s only because I was sick as a dog at the end of December and couldn’t do much of anything. I didn’t get any closure on my year. I didn’t get a chance to say good-bye, to kick the year out the door and start fresh. I thought it would be fitting to pop open a bottle to do that and also raise a glass to my Aunt.

Stoneboat Grand Piano

So that’s what I’m going to do. And then I get to start on my new year.

I’ve also done a lot of reflecting over the past couple of months with where the blog is going. Everywhere I turn in my blogging life people are talking about “Take the Leap”. I’ve been thinking about that a lot, what is my leap? Am I ready to take this little thing I have going to a self-hosted site? Should I be going out there and pitching myself more? There are so many what ifs but I came to this conclusion.  For where I am in my life, I can’t do those things. In order for me to maintain balance I need to continue as I am.

I’ve also thought a lot about what kind of blog this is. I’m not exactly a recipe blog, nor am I restaurant review blog. I don’t talk about healthy eating alone or about travel. I’ve read on forums that people skip through all the narrative to get to the recipes only. That is not me.

I am a story writer, first and foremost. My stories revolve around everything relating to food. Sometimes you’ll get a story with a recipe, or a restaurant review, or a product. You get the idea.   And that’s just who I am.

For me to determine that for myself and not feel anxious about any of the other stuff is a leap, not much of one but still a leap. So for this year, that’s how I continue.  I already have some posts in the works that revolve around healthy eating so stay tuned.  Let 2016 begin.

A Jack Daniel’s Exclusive – The Sinatra Century

I didn’t get a chance to see Frank Sinatra in concert, of course not, I’m too young for that but oh my, wouldn’t that be fun. When one of his songs comes on I can’t help but daydream and let my mind wander. It drifts to a time when men wore hats and ladies wouldn’t leave the house without a pair of gloves on, no matter the heat.  I have often wished that I could have been at one of those concerts at the Sands in Las Vegas while the Rat Pack was filming Ocean’s Eleven during the day and performing at night.  This is a completely different place that I would like to visit for a while.

A couple of weeks ago I kind of got the chance to do just that.

I was lucky to get an invite to an exclusive Jack Daniel’s tasting hosted by Brookline PR and Jack Daniel’s at the Bourbon Room at National on 10th in Calgary.  I had never been in that room before.  It is full of old school charm with dark paneling on the walls and red leather booths.  With ‘Ol Blues Eyes serenading us in the background, the atmosphere paired with the cocktails helped to get us in the mood.

Jack Daniel's Cocktails

John Breckon of Jack Daniel’s, dressed to the nines, took us on a tour without even leaving the room.  He weaved a tale of Jack and Frank.  Along the way we learned the process of how Jack Daniel’s is made.  There was a lot of talk of toasting barrels and how toasting the wood is a significant part of the process.

Jack Daniel's Tasting

We were eased into the tasting with the lighter Gentleman Jack.  And then when our taste buds were awake and ready for a fuller flavor we tried the Single Barrel Select.  All of this was just to get us ready for the main event.

Jack Daniel's Gentleman Jack and Single Barrel Select

And then we heard about how Jack was such a part of Frank Sinatra.  It started the moment Jack Daniel’s was introduced to Frank by Jackie Gleason, that was the beginning.  It became such a part of Sinatra that he insisted on having it on stage with him at all times.  Did you know that he was even buried with a bottle of Jack Daniel’s?

So to honour this unique relationship this year, on the occasion of Frank Sinatra’s 100th birthday, Jack Daniel’s created this special “once-in-a-lifetime whiskey” from only 100 barrels hand selected.  And the barrels were specially crafted with interior grooves that exposed the liquid not only to the toasted wood but the white oak as well.  The result is a complex, robust flavor that finishes with tropical notes.  It was my great pleasure to get a chance to experience this exclusive bottle.

Jack Daniel's Sinatra Century

Each bottle of the Sinatra Century comes in a commemorative box with a hardbound book that tributes Frank, his music and the whiskey.  But the really amazing thing is that Jack Daniel’s was able to acquire from the Sinatra family a never before released copy of a Frank Sinatra Sands concert from 1966.  Inside the box is a replica of Frank’s tie clip that plays this concert.

Now, I didn’t get a chance to listen to the music on the tie clip that night but what a way to time travel.  A chance to be taken back to that time I so want to visit, with the journey provided by Jack Daniel’s.

Jack Daniel's Sinatra Century Boxed Set

So where to get this exclusive bottle in Calgary?  Check out the Liquor Depot, Willow Park Wines and other select stores around town.  It will cost about $850.00 per bottle but for those Sinatra fans in your life, the experience would be priceless.

Calgary Restaurant Roundup

After my last post I was thinking about all the great restaurants we have in Calgary.  I wanted to share with you some of these places but I can’t be everywhere at once so I thought I would enlist some help from my friends.  Below you will find links to my fellow Calgary blogger’s pages sharing their experiences in the past year at some local eateries.

Calgary Restaurant Roundup

Bernice at Dish’n’the Kitchen decided to share a recent meal at Market.  At every FRESH dinner at Market the passion of the chefs shines through with every plate, so too does the passion of each patron and volunteer; from each garden volunteer to the garden managers and sponsors.

Dish'n'the Kitchen Market

From Merry at Merry About Town we have a post about one of my new favourite places in townVisiting the Simmons Building in The East Village of Calgary is both a foodie adventure and a step back into the past. Read about how three Calgary foodie institutions came together to form the cornerstone of the newly gentrified East Village.

Merry About Town Charbar

This year has seen a few new Brazilian Steakhouses open in town.  One of these was Pampa and they brought their Edmonton restaurant to Calgary and Fareen at Food Mama wrote about it.

Food Mama Pampa

And last but not least, new comer to the Calgary food blogger scene, Aadil from Beltline Bites wrote about GrumansCraving a bit of East Coast comfort food? Instead of booking a plane ticket, just head down to Grumans. They offer matzo ball soup, smoked meat, homemade pickles and a load of other deli classics. Another one of Calgary’s hidden gems that take the time to make everything in house, leading to majorly delicious bites.


Beltline Bites Gruman's

Thanks everyone and happy eating in Calgary!

 

Pigeonhole – enRoute Magazine’s Best New Restaurant for 2015

I haven’t talked about a restaurant in Calgary for a while so let’s do that because Calgary’s food scene has a lot of good stuff happening.  My friend Patricia, from Miss Foodie’s Gourmet Adventures, and I try to get out every once in a while to enjoy a meal.  She’s a great dining companion as she is incredibly knowledgeable about the food we are eating, takes great food photos and surprisingly, we share the same taste in food.

A couple of months ago in September we decided to check out Justin Leboe’s newest restaurant, Pigeonhole, as we both hadn’t tried it yet.  I have long been a fan of Chef Leboe’s other restaurants in town.  I still tell people that Pigeonhole’s next door neighbor, Model Milk, probably has the best bang for your buck in Calgary with their weekly Sunday dinners.  Because of that I was looking forward to our meal.

One of the things to keep in mind about Pigeonhole is that the small plate concept menu is constantly in flux.  They have a few fan favourites that stay on the menu but generally the menu evolves with the season.  Because of that some of the things I am going to show you obviously won’t be on the menu now.

The other thing to keep in mind is this restaurant is not going to be for everyone.  I strongly suggest when going you choose someone who is adventurous with their flavours, likes to get many dishes and doesn’t mind sharing with you.  Patricia and I are like-minded so we had a good experience.

When Patricia and I went to Pigeonhole, voting was underway for enRoute Magazine’s annual best new restaurant.  It was great to actually try Pigeonhole’s food and then get to vote for them.  What was even better was that when I was getting ready to jet off to Montreal two weeks ago I learned that Pigeonhole won the title.  I am very happy for Justin Leboe and his team as they are bringing a unique experience to Calgary with this restaurant.

So here are the photos of our dishes.  The standouts for me were the Tomatoes & Peaches and the Nori Crumpets with Shrimp Butter.  One item is still on the menu, one is not.  That means you can still get that decadent shrimp butter if you were to go to Pigeonhole today.  The only disappointment for us were the Warm Madeleines we had at the end of our meal.  They were a bit heavy in texture and a little too brown around the edges.  And the presentation was a little odd as they were served to us bottoms up.  We still enjoyed them though.

Warm Madeleines.  Even though these were not our favourite we still enjoyed them.

Warm Madeleines. Even though these were not our favourite we still enjoyed them.

So here is the rest of our meal from start to finish.  Also, a very special thank you to the lovely Heather Wighton who always has the best recommendations.

To start, enjoying some wine in one of Pigeonhole's beautifully etched glasses.

To start, enjoying some wine in one of Pigeonhole’s beautifully etched glasses.

A unique and refreshing combination, Tomatoes & Peaches with Mozzarella, Lime Basil and Elderflower.

A unique and refreshing combination, Tomatoes & Peaches with Mozzarella, Lime Basil and Elderflower.

Driview Farms Lamb Tartare with Burnt Onion, Goat's Butter and Spicy Greens, perfectly paired with the house made sourdough.

Driview Farms Lamb Tartare with Burnt Onion, Goat’s Butter and Spicy Greens, perfectly paired with the house made sourdough.

A tangy, creamy dish, Ricotta Dumplings with Tomato, Chili and Crème Fraiche.

A tangy, creamy dish, Ricotta Dumplings with Tomato, Chili and Crème Fraiche.

On this plate is one of the most amazing things ever!  Shrimp Butter.  The Nori Crumpets are the perfect Shrimp Butter delivery devices.  My best advice after our experience is don't stop to take the picture, eat this dish when it comes to your table hot.

On this plate is one of the most amazing things ever! Shrimp Butter. The Nori Crumpets are the perfect Shrimp Butter delivery devices. My best advice after our experience is don’t stop to take the picture, eat this dish when it comes to your table hot.

We ordered the BC Pine Mushrooms after we were done with the original four plates.  The shaved mushrooms were so tasty atop the Softly Scrambled Eggs and toasted Sourdough.

We ordered the BC Pine Mushrooms after we were done with the original four plates. The shaved mushrooms were so tasty atop the Softly Scrambled Eggs and toasted Sourdough.

Congratulations to Pigeonhole on their well-earned enRoute Magazine Best New Restaurant for 2015 win.  I am looking forward to many more eating adventures in the years to come.

2015 Food Bloggers of Canada Conference Photos

Just as I promised the last post, here are my photos from the 2015 Food Bloggers of Canada Conference.  I realized after I started editing that I have a lot more than I thought!  So here we go.

This fun mailbox at the Westin Montreal was waiting for me every time I took the elevator to my room.

This fun mailbox at the Westin Montreal was waiting for me every time I took the elevator to my room.

FBC 2015 Andrew Scrivani Photography Workshop Attendees.

FBC 2015 Andrew Scrivani Photography Workshop Attendees

All of the meals and workshops at FBC 2015 were on the 11th Floor at the Westin Montreal which had great views all around.

All of the meals and workshops at FBC 2015 were on the 11th Floor at the Westin Montreal which had great views all around.

Before registration on Friday I had a chance to explore the area around the hotel and found a few interesting things to look at on my walkabout.  This is the Victoria Square Metro Station.

Before registration on Friday I had a chance to explore the area around the hotel and found a few interesting things to look at on my walkabout. This is the Victoria Square Metro Station.

And this Statue of Le Grand Jean Paul on Place Jean-Paul Riopelle.

And this Statue of Le Grand Jean Paul on Place Jean-Paul Riopelle.

My favourite at the FBC 2015 Cocktail Reception were these Maple Bacon Devilled Eggs sponsored by the Egg Farmers of Canada.

My favourite at the FBC 2015 Cocktail Reception were these Maple Bacon Devilled Eggs sponsored by the Egg Farmers of Canada.

Dinner at the FBC 2015 Tasty Turkey Gala Dinner on the first night.  Yes, this includes the Turkey Bread Pudding with Smoked Turkey Brittle, which I loved!  There was only a handful of us that did though.

Dinner at the FBC 2015 Tasty Turkey Gala Dinner on the first night. Yes, this includes the Turkey Bread Pudding with Smoked Turkey Brittle, which I loved! There was only a handful of us that did though.

Breakfast on Saturday morning was hosted by Burnbrae Farms and Gourmet Garden.  I absolutely loved the soft poached egg on hash brown cup they served!

Breakfast on Saturday morning was hosted by Burnbrae Farms and Gourmet Garden. I absolutely loved the soft poached egg on hash brown cup they served!

Our amazing MC for the weekend, Mairlyn Smith with Keynote speaker Ricardo.  We then enjoyed chocolate chip cookies made by Ricardo and all of his helpers.

Our amazing MC for the weekend, Mairlyn Smith with Keynote speaker Ricardo. We then enjoyed chocolate chip cookies made by Ricardo and all of his helpers.

A fun moment between Lesley Ellen Harris and Sarah Huggins before their FBC 2015 workshop, Legalese for Bloggers.

A fun moment between Lesley Ellen Harris and Sarah Huggins before their FBC 2015 workshop, Legalese for Bloggers.

Lunch the first day sponsored by the Dairy Farmers of Canada.  They knocked it out of the park with an assortment of Grilled Cheese sandwiches and Cream of Tomato Soup in jars.

Lunch the first day sponsored by the Dairy Farmers of Canada. They knocked it out of the park with an assortment of Grilled Cheese sandwiches and Cream of Tomato Soup in jars.

On Saturday afternoon I was able to get out for a walk and explore Old Montreal with Merry from Merry about Town.  Here we are in front of Notre Dame.

On Saturday afternoon I was able to get out for a walk and explore Old Montreal with Merry from Merry about Town. Here we are in front of Notre Dame.

We also sampled Maple Taffy at Canadian Maple Delights.  I really want to go back East in the spring to enjoy this tradition.

We also sampled Maple Taffy at Canadian Maple Delights. I really want to go back East in the spring to enjoy this tradition.

Dinner the second night was sponsored by Canadian Lentils.  It was pretty dark in the room for the meal so I decided not to take any food photos.

Dinner the second night was sponsored by Canadian Lentils. It was pretty dark in the room for the meal so I decided not to take any food photos.

BUT there were lots of other things to take photos of, like these very flexible Tango Dancers from Cirque Eloize who provided our entertainment for the evening.

BUT there were lots of other things to take photos of, like these very flexible Tango Dancers from Cirque Eloize who provided our entertainment for the evening.

The FBC 2015 session I was looking forward to the most was Getting the Story - Working with Local Food Farmers and Chefs with Tiffany Mayer, Chef Jay Nutt and Jennifer Hayes.  It did not disappoint.  There was lots of practical information and tips here that I plan to use going forward.

The FBC 2015 session I was looking forward to the most was Getting the Story – Working with Local Food Farmers and Chefs with Tiffany Mayer, Chef Jay Nutt and Jennifer Hayes. It did not disappoint. There was lots of practical information and tips here that I plan to use going forward.

I was really bad the last day.  I was so focused on other things that I didn't get photos of our St.Viateur Bagel Breakfast or our Schwartz Smoked Meat Lunch.  I did however get this very pretty photo of the treats on our Cacao Barry Coffee Break.

I was really bad the last day. I was so focused on other things that I didn’t get photos of our St.Viateur Bagel Breakfast or our Schwartz Smoked Meat Lunch. I did however get this very pretty photo of the treats on our Cacao Barry Coffee Break.

My last photo of Montreal.  Just before we jetted off a group of us headed off on the great Montreal Poutine adventure.  Our group, including Merry from Merry About Town, Fareen from Food Mama, Bernice from Dish'n'the Kitchen, Nicole from Culinary Cool and Ginni from Spicy Eggplant, walked from the hotel to La Banquise to get a taste of this squeaky, cheesy, gooey poutine.

My last photo of Montreal. Just before we jetted off a group of us headed off on the great Montreal Poutine adventure. Our group, including Merry from Merry About Town, Fareen from Food Mama, Bernice from Dish’n’the Kitchen, Nicole from Culinary Cool and Ginni from Spicy Eggplant, walked from the hotel to La Banquise to get a taste of this squeaky, cheesy, gooey poutine.

And that my friends is a wrap.  FBC 2016 is in Toronto next year and I can’t wait to see what’s in store.

2015 Food Bloggers of Canada Conference Thoughts

This past weekend I was blessed to be in Montreal to attend my second Food Bloggers of Canada conference.  It definitely was a different experience for me as this year I was lucky enough to be on the volunteer crew.  Some may not consider that lucky but I did.  I love being behind the scenes and helping others enjoy their experience.

So here are my thoughts.  Just like last year I am going to split my posts, this week will be the words as they are burning in the front of my mind and need to be written down.  This will be a long post because there was a lot to digest for me.  Next week will be the photos of the food and fun.

Because my life has pretty much been in upheaval for the last month I hadn’t really given much thought to the conference, to be honest.  It was always there in the future but I couldn’t quite focus on it because of all of the things I needed to do before I got there.  I knew where I needed to be, I knew I was going to be fed, and I knew I was going to have a pillow under my head at the end of the day.  Other than that I was ready to work and that was all that mattered to me.

And then the day came, I was on my flight to Montreal.  It was a very early day so I made sure to sleep as much as I could on the plane to prepare me for the upcoming day.  And I’m glad I did because we were working right away, as soon as we got to the hotel.  That day is like a flash to me.  Making new friends and getting to know each other while stuffing bag after bag with all that amazing swag.  It’s a blur of burlap and books and lots of lifting.  Then in the evening we shared a meal together and enjoyed each other’s company in the quiet before the storm.

Selection of plates from The GaZette in the Westin Hotel Montreal.  On the left is Albacore Tuna, pea puree, kimchi, marinated fennel, soy reduction.  Top right is Gnocchi Carbonara with lobster, green peas, parmesan, quail egg and truffles.  Bottom right is Beets, coppa, figs, pumpkin seeds, goat cheese, watercress, smoked bread croutons with honey vinaigrette.

Selection of plates from The GaZette in the Westin Hotel Montreal. On the left is Albacore Tuna, pea puree, kimchi, marinated fennel, soy reduction. Top right is Gnocchi Carbonara with lobster, green peas, parmesan, quail egg and truffles. Bottom right is Beets, coppa, figs, pumpkin seeds, goat cheese, watercress, smoked bread croutons with honey vinaigrette.

The next day was similar in fashion as we got ready for arrivals and workshops.  There was lots of lifting and lugging of swag bags and props.  In fact before most of you picked up your swag bags my Fitbit was buzzing at 10,000 steps at 2:30 pm.  Between the first two days of physical labour and the last two days of sight seeing my Fitbit was very happy with me.  I think it funny that I may have been the only food blogger at this conference that actually lost weight!

And then we were there, it was Friday night cocktails, show time.  The rest of the conference just flew by after that.  So instead of walking you through everything blow-by-blow I just wanted to talk about the lasting impressions.  Last year my post was about three words.  The take away from this year is three thoughts.

The Maple Leaf Cocktail at the FBC2015 Opening Gala Cocktail Reception.

The Maple Leaf Cocktail at the FBC 2015 Opening Gala Cocktail Reception.

We are all going to be talking about Taking the Leap, of course, because that was the theme that Melissa and Ethan set-out for the conference.  What was definitely defined was that those leaps will be different for each of us.  Some of us may be on the verge of those life defining leaps and some of us may be on just a little bunny hop.  Whatever it is, jump, move forward, challenge yourself to take the next step.

I loved that Ethan and Melissa asked us all to write down a goal we could achieve in two months and stick it in an envelope with our address on it.  It will be interesting to see how that works out for everyone when they are mailed in the new year.  I thought it was a brilliant and totally non-threatening way to set a goal for yourself. I mean, who’s going to keep you accountable more than, well you.  I hope everyone took the opportunity to do their homework and fill out that goal.

The second theme is one that I talked about last year but I think it really is what these conferences are all about anyway and that is connection.  This year is no exception.  It was my great joy to meet up with some friends that I made last year and spend time with them.  That even applies to friends from my own city.  We are always so busy with what we are doing that we don’t get a chance to sit down and actually talk to each other.  I also made a couple of new friends and really found out about them and what makes them tick.  All of these connections are so valuable to me.

Finally getting to see my friend Nicole from Culinary Cool again.  These connections are so important.

Finally getting to see my friend Nicole from Culinary Cool again. These connections are so important.

But what is really important this year is how we take all these connections and work together.  We all have a place in this crazy blogosphere world we are in and we all bring something different to the table.  How do we support each other to make us all stronger?  What does that look like in your city, province and country?  Melissa and Ethan have helped us out and given us this community to talk about it.  Now how do we carry that forward?

So I know this post is already really long but I wanted to talk about one more thing.  On the last day, the very last session, I received my definition of purpose, at least for the next little while.  In a session talking about moving from a hobby blogger to a professional blogger Ayngelina Brogan said it is ok to be a hobby blogger.  Then it hit me, that is where I am and it is ok that that is where I am.  That session combined with all the others made me think though.  Ok, I am hobby blogger but I am going to be the best hobby blogger I can be.  Put your best forward, even if it is your hobby, be professional.  Such good advice.

Again, I want to say thank you to Melissa and Ethan for putting on a stellar conference.  Le Westin was amazing and there was so much thought and detail put into everything.  Thank you to all of the sponsors.  Without them none of what we did in Montreal would be possible.  The speakers and sessions were inspiring, all of them. Even though Casey probably blew everyone’s minds talking about SEO he fit right in and gave us so much to think about.  So thank you all.  A special thank you to Beth, Sondi, Christina, Ariel, Sandra and Shauna, our team.  In the quiet moments it was special to learn about you and your kids or dogs or wherever you are in life.  And of course all of you participants, it was so fun to see your enthusiasm and smiles every day.  Ok, the gush fest is over but I needed to say all that.

So now that I have that out of the way stay tuned next week for some more photos of food and Montreal.  I had a quick flip through and I don’t have too many but what I have I am going to share with you.

The Calgary crew that was at FBC 2015.  Ginni from the Spicy Eggplant, she just moved to Toronto last month but we still consider her from Calgary. Bernice from Dish'n'the Kitchen, Fareen from Food Mama, Merry from Merry About Town and of course me.  It was great to get to spend time with all of these Ladies.

The Calgary crew that was at FBC 2015. Ginni from the Spicy Eggplant, she just moved to Toronto last month but we still consider her from Calgary. Bernice from Dish’n’the Kitchen, Fareen from Food Mama, Merry from Merry About Town and of course me. It was great to get to spend time with all of these Ladies.

Grandma’s Cream Scones

I have written and rewritten this post in my head so many times.  I am going to talk about my Grandma’s scones but before I get there I just wanted to share some thoughts.

This has been such a tough year for our family but what I love most is that we are getting through it all together.  Because we are family and that’s what we do.  That’s what our Grandparents taught us, and our Moms too.  And as I sat looking at my cousin’s, thinking about all of our loss this year, I thought about what an incredible legacy my grandparents have left.  I am so proud of my siblings and my cousins and I am so grateful to be a part of this family.  We have a few of the older generation left to guide us but we are ready to carry the torch.

Remember when I was talking earlier in the year, after we lost my Aunt, about all eleven of us being thrown in the back of the car together?  Well, all eleven of us were together again, for a very brief time.  I was so happy to see each and everyone, I love them all.  I finally got that photo I wanted of all of us.  I know Grandma and Grandpa, Mom and my Aunt were and are smiling down on us.

The Eleven Cousins

Ok, now I want to talk to you about my Grandma’s scones.  The infamous scones that we all loved.  When we were sharing memories of Grandma two weeks ago we all talked about her scones.  As children we begged her to make them and she always did, of course.  As adults some of us asked for the recipe but she laughed because she never wrote it down, it all came from her head.  My sister even stood beside my Gran one time while she made the scones, diligently writing everything down.  And even though my sister has attempted to make the scones she said she has never really been able to recreate them.

So imagine my surprise when I got to the funeral home and looked at the back of the memorial card for my Grandma and saw the recipe for her scones.  The first opportunity I got I asked my Aunt where this came from.  It turns out when my cousins were going through my Gran’s papers, getting ready for the funeral, this recipe was scribbled on a page of an address book.  I was very surprised and extremely pleased.

Grandma's Cream Scones Handwritten Recipe

My Gran taught us all so much about food and for me, she was a big inspiration to start this blog.  She not only talked about food all the time but she was also a very good cook.  But of all the things she was so good at making, the scones were the things that brought us the most comfort.  So to have this recipe, written in her hand is an immense gift.

This weekend when I finally got around to making the scones I kind of felt my Grandma at my side.  I changed a couple of things in her recipe as I went but I could almost hear her say, that’s ok, I always went by feel anyway.  And then when I had the dough made I kind of hit a wall.  I looked at the bowl not sure how to form them.  I was going to roll the dough out and cut them into clean circles using a glass but then the memory came to me as clear as day.  Visions of my Gran rolling the dough in her hands and then patting them flat, so that’s what I did too.

Grandma's Cream Scones Before

Then when I pulled them out I couldn’t wait to try them.  Are they exactly like my Gran’s?  Almost but not quite.  Rumour has it that Grandma always said the secret was using slightly expired cream, but I couldn’t wait that long so I used what I had in the fridge.  One of these days I’ll give that a try.  Regardless, I ate the scones just like I did when I was a kid, slathered in butter with strawberry jam.  I felt like a kid again and it felt good.

Grandma's Cream Scones After

So here is my Gran’s recipe with my changes.  I hope it brings you as much comfort as it does us.

Grandma’s Cream Scones

Ingredients:

2 ½ cups flour

½ cup sugar

1 tbsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

¼ cup frozen butter

1 cup raisins

1 egg

1 cup cream

  1. Heat oven to 375°C.
  2. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  3. Using a box grater, grate the frozen butter into curls and put in the flour mixture.
  4. Using your fingers, toss the butter curls in the flour.
  5. Add the cream and egg.
  6. Mix ingredients together until all the flour is combined and the mixture is wet. Don’t be afraid to use your hands!
  7. Roll the dough into balls then pat flat.
  8. Place on a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper.
  9. Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes.

Makes 10 medium size scones.

Grandma's Cream Scones with Jam