First I overslept and woke to a phone call from the wonderful woman who runs the camp I take my dog to. Every Tuesday, just like the mail, I deliver Paprika there through sleet, snow, rain and shine. The camp manager wondered if Rika was coming today for a hike with her buds. Uh – isn’t it Monday? No.
Do You Have
Days Weeks Like This?
So this post was due yesterday, which explains why some of you got a blank page when you opened it earlier. When I realized I had the days wrong, I ran around the house like a mad woman getting the photography all set up in the den. And of course, this couldn’t begin until I rushed Rika to camp, along the twisty mountain roads that rim Lake Tahoe. Next, there were technical difficulties importing the photos because I’m trying some new things with my camera. What little patience remained, promptly exploded, because I knew you were all scratching your heads wondering where the post content was.
I could blame it on the fact that our summer music festival, Classical Tahoe, ended on Sunday night instead of Saturday, and that threw me off a day. Anyway, all day Monday I honestly thought it was Sunday, until I saw that the post office was open.
Hopefully you have days like this and understand. Either way, I sincerely apologize for the mixup with a blank post you may have received in your inbox last night. And I hope this Blueberry Scone Bread was worth the wait. I adapted the recipe from one of my very favorite breakfast treats from the amazing Liz Larkin on Food52. You can see the original recipe here, which is perfectly written if you live at sea level. These days, I have to make adjustments for baking at 7000 feet, so I wrote this recipe for high-altitude baking. Go to Liz’s recipe for baking this scone bread at sea level.
Bake Like a Chef
If you don’t care for cardamom, just substitute cinnamon in the streusel. I have a fondness for cardamom, a spice used in a lot of Indian food, and use it in all kinds of desserts and breads.
Most of you live at sea level, I’m willing to bet. It’s much drier at 7000 feet where I live and bake, requiring an increase in moisture in most baked goods up here. Likewise, because of the difference in air pressure at higher altitudes versus sea level, chemical leaveners are adjusted to prevent cakes and breads from exploding in the oven. If you want to bake up a loaf of this luscious bread at sea level, here are the super-easy adjustments you’ll want to make:
- Reduce the heavy cream in the Scone Bread to 1 cup. No adjustments are needed for the cream in the streusel.
- Eliminate the extra egg white, and just use 1 large egg.
- Increase the baking powder to 1 tablespoon.
- Bake for 50 – 55 minutes.
High Altitude Blueberry Scone Bread
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cardamom
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream
- 1 cup fresh blueberries
- 2 1/2 cups 11.25 ounces all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- Lemon zest from 1 lemon
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 6 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter cut into pats
- 1 cup + 1 tablespoon heavy cream
- 1 large egg
- 1 egg white from large egg
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup sifted powdered sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
Make the Streusel
- Mix together the flour, sugars, and cardamom. Stir in the cream until the dry ingredients are completely moistened. Toss together with the berries.
Make the Scone Bread
- Preheat the oven to 375˚F, and butter a loaf pan.
- In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade, pulse together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, lemon zest and cinnamon. Add the pats of butter, and pulse about 8 or 9 times. If you sift through the mixture with a fork, you should be able to see some butter chunks. Spill it all into a medium bowl.
- In a small bowl or mixing cup, whisk together the cream, egg, egg white, and vanilla extract. Pour into the bowl with the flour and butter mixture. Using a spatula, gently combine the wet ingredients into the dry. When combined into a ball, place it on a lightly floured work space.
- Gently knead the dough a few times, and flatten into a 6" X 14" rectangle using your fingers. If the dough is too sticky, you can dip your fingers into water and try again, or place the dough in the refrigerator for 15 minutes to firm up a bit. I just try to move as quickly as I can through it.
- Slice the dough into 12 pieces by first dividing it in half, lengthwise, into 2 long rectangles. Use a sharp knife for this. Then divide each long rectangle into 6 squares.
- Spread 1/2 of the streusel over 6 of the squares. Stack the dough squares without streusel on top of the ones with streusel. Spread the remaining streusel on top. Arrange the dough squares, two at a time, standing up on end into the loaf pan. As you squeeze the final squares in, it will flatten and raise the others up in the loaf pan so that they'll all be just a little below the top of the pan. Some streusel will inevitably fall off, just sprinkle that over the top of the bread dough.
- Bake for 65 minutes. You may want to cover it with foil for the final 20 minutes, if you don't want it to brown too much.
- Cool and drizzle on the lemon icing (recipe below).
- Sift the powdered sugar, and stir in the lemon juice using a fork, until an icing forms.