My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot.
~ Ashleigh Brilliant

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Tea & Scones

As promised in a previous post, here's a sweet treat of tea and scones...

We had vegan oatmeal cinnamon scones during our stay at the Elm Cottage B&B in Searsport, ME last summer, and our hostess Janet shared her recipe for them. (I've also found an almost identical recipe on this and a couple of other web sites, but its original author remains unknown). The recipe originally called for 1/2 cup of margarine, but Janet made them with applesauce for our no-added fats diet and was pleased with the results.

I made these scones a couple of weeks ago from Janet's recipe, then again last weekend with a cranberry-orange twist. The original recipe and my cranberry-orange variation are below...

Vegan Oatmeal Cinnamon Scones
Recipe from Janet Williams, Elm Cottage B&B
with Cranberry Orange variation
Variation by Laloofah :-)

1 1/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/3 cup brown sugar (I use Sucanat)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup unsweetened organic applesauce
1/2 cup raisins (or dried cranberries)
1/3 cup organic soy milk (I use vanilla)
2 tsp demerara sugar (optional, for sprinkling on top)
1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional, I don't use)

For Cranberry Orange scones:
1 tsp orange zest

Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in food processor or large bowl. Cut in applesauce until mixture becomes uniformly crumbly. Stir in oats and raisins or craisins. Add soy milk, and - if using - orange zest and orange flavor. Mix gently until a soft dough beings to cling together.

Turn dough out onto a floured surface and pat into a 7-inch circle. Cut into 8 wedges and place them on an ungreased baking sheet.

Bake at 350ºF for 15-18 minutes until golden brown and firm when pressed lightly in the center.

You can make these with other dried fruit as well: chopped dates, apricots, blueberries, cherries, apples or pears.

And what goes better with scones than a nice cuppa? We ate some of our scones with our morning mug of Dandy Blend, but as an afternoon or evening treat we enjoyed them with this delightful Naughty & Nice organic chocolate peppermint tea, a generous Christmas gift from my friend Rose. Made by Remedy Teas in Seattle, it's a Limited Edition Holiday Tea that I couldn't even find for sale on their web site during Christmas. I don't know if it will be available next year, if it's only sold in stores or only in the Seattle area, but if you can get some next year I highly recommend it. With all organic ingredients that include peppermint leaf, raw cacao nibs, honeybush and rooibos, it's really delicious. It smells divine, and look how pretty it is!

It brews prettily too, in a festive red color...

Is that gorgeous tea, or what?

So some friends joined me for tea and scones the other day, and as we were debating (or dozing, as the case may be) our way through various topics, the subject of how to pronounce the word "scone" came up...

We agreed that it depends on where you come from. I said that we, and every other American we know, pronounces it with a long o, as in "stone." The Mad Hatter argued that when in England (where they certainly know their scones!) we heard it pronounced with a short o, so that it rhymed with "gone." And the March Hare reminded me that while on a trip to Scotland we visited Scone Palace, where the word was pronounced Scoon, rhyming with "spoon." (The March Hare apparently didn't want to use my preferred rhyming word, "loon," in the Mad Hatter's company). ;-) The Dormouse just snored, so I don't know what he thinks.

And what about you?

Yep, I used "loon" as my rhyming example in the poll, and the Mad Hatter can just deal with it. Besides...



  1. I haven't had a scone in forevertime! These look really good and I love that they don't have a bunch of added fat.

    Chocolate peppermint tea, you say? Oh my. Now that sounds like a perfect thing to go with scones. Yum yum!

    I had no idea that scone was pronounced differently. I've always heard the "rhymes with stone" pronunciation.

  2. Molly ~ "forevertime" - :-)

    I don't know why I don't make scones more often ~ we really enjoy them, and this recipe is so easy. I plan to try it with some of those other fruit ideas, and maybe even with some fresh apples.

    That tea is perfect with scones! And with Hearty Spiced Cocoa Muffins or Cranberry Banana Bread or Pumpkin Bread or Veggie Confetti Muffins or Ginger Carrot Cake... well, you get the idea. And it's perfect all by itself, too! This may be my favorite tea ever. Pity it's not available everywhere, year 'round!

    I'd never heard any other pronunciation either, till we went to the UK. Took me a while to get used to hearing "scon," and by the time I'd adjusted to that, the Scots threw me with "scoon!"

    I like the "rhymes with stone" pronunciation best because it allows me to use my favorite animal-friendly alternative to the hideous phrase, "kill two birds with one stone," which is, "thrill two birds with one scone." :-)

  3. Now I wish I'd gotten some of the naughty and nice tea when I was at Remedy in December. Oh well. I think I'm making scones for a bake sale next weekend. I just hope I can make them and not eat them.

  4. The scones look delicious and when I get my oven maybe I'll give them a whirl, but meanwhile I love your Alice in Wonderland comments! And I actually have a poster (which is now hung on some studs in my kitchen area) that is of the Mad Hatter's Tea Party and says, " We're all quite mad. You'll fit right in," which always works in my home but especially given the current state of life in the construction zone! The tea also looks fantastic! Cheers!

  5. Laloofah -- Nice to sit down with friends over a good tea and some special homemade scoooones. It all looked wonderful. -- barbara

  6. Oh my those scones look good - WANT! It's pronounced both scone and scon here (Leicestershire, UK), personally I say scon (as did my Mum who was from Scotland). I don't normally like my tea messed about with (don't get me started on the fennel thing again...), but I have to say the Naughty and Nice one sounds rather tasty. My everyday tea is Lapsang Souchong by Twinings - gorgeous!

  7. Ok, now I'm craving scones (I say scon, but only because I was a snobby English literature graduate student when I first had one). I made blueberry ones once and the whole batter turned blue, which made them look very--shall we say, interesting. :)

  8. Hey Tex
    I'm told you'll now know who sent me by the use of that name! Yes, it's true, we share a wonderful friend named Susan. your blog IS delightful, just as she promised it would be. you've edified me regarding the pronunciation of scone, as I've always believed it was as in "stone". I've eaten my share of them, but never made them myself. I think you may have provided the tipping point for that to change. have a beautiful day!

  9. Andrea ~ I hope you'll get another chance next year. If they carry Naughty & Nice again and make it available online, I definitely plan to order some!

    That is the trick, isn't it? I'd have to make them at the last possible minute, grab them from the oven and immediately hurl them into a lockbox, and then drive really fast to the bake sale. :-) Have fun, and I hope to read about your scones (or whatever you end up making) on your blog!

    Daphne ~ I can't wait till you get your oven! (Bet you're getting a little eager too!) I'm behind on your remodeling posts, must get up to speed later today or tomorrow.

    That's such fun that you have that Mad Hatter tea party sign! LOL! That has always been one of my favorite scenes in one of my favorite books. In fact, my mom had a really cool thing commissioned for me as a gift when I was in high school (another odd present for a teen, but this one I loved as much when I got it as I do now!) There was a local man who carved wood figures, and his wife would cover them in dried corn husks and paint them, and they'd build a scene for them. Mom had them do the Mad Hatter's tea party scene for me (she also had them do one of me and my horse Sassy from a photograph), and my dad built a display case for it. It's hard to describe, but it's so cool! In fact, you've just given me an idea for a future post! :-)

    Kentucky Barbara ~ :-) Yes, it was a delightful (if mad) get-together, though I didn't approve of Hatter & Hare trying to stuff poor Doormouse into the teapot! ;-) LOL - I love the "scoooones." Am I to deduce that you pronounce it like "loons" then?

  10. UK Barbara/aka Bee ~ (I'm obviously still working on my names strategy!) You sound like a widdle kid! "WANT!" LOL You know I'd moosh one through the "internets tubes" to you if I could! Along with some of that tea. Even a tea purist like yourself would, I do believe, enjoy this tea! (Nary a fennel leaf, twig, seed nor root ever dreamt of coming near it, either!) :-)

    I recall your mentioning Lapsang Chousong in a post recently. Does it hail from the Himalaya region? I've never had any (so far as I know), but it sounds intriguing. I must see if I can locate some.

    So, our first "scon like gone" vote is cast! Good, I was hoping for some variety of pronunciation!

    Georgia ~ "... and now Scon Like Gone is coming up on the inside, pressing Scone Like Stone hard through the stretch as they enter the first turn..." :-) (Since I'm averse to horse racing I don't really know the terminology and may have the poor scones racing backwards, for all I know. LOL)

    Scones sound like the perfect munchie for a snobby English Lit grad student! :-) I was going to ask you if you know about Pride and Vegiduce, but then I checked your blog and see that you do! Did you get to make any forays to England during your studies? Could it be that's where you tasted your first scone?

    I've made some unfortunate blue-grey colored blueberry muffins and pancakes, the result of my overly enthusiastic stirring. Seems to happen more with thawed frozen bloobers than with fresh ones.

    Miss Becky ~ Yes, Secret Codeword Tex does identify the source of your visit! ;-) Thank you very much for stopping by and for your lovely compliment, for which I'm delighted to have shared both my limited knowledge of scone pronunciations and this lovely recipe in exchange. :-) Happy baking!

  11. I can't believe I missed the tea party! Well, maybe I didn't, as I remember the Mad Hatter's party seemed to be an eternal affair.

    Those scooons sound lovely. I of course pronounce it like all the other yanks, but I lurve the Scottish rendition best, and just to be pretentious I voted for that one.

    Glad you liked the sounded good and thought it was worth a shot. I'll remember to look for it again next Christmas as I never tried any myself, but it does look pretty and sounded like it would from the label ingredient.

    Thanks for that Scoon recipe, I'm going to have to get baking very soon!

    While you all were at the party, did anyone come up with the answer to the burning question....

    "Why is a raven like a writing desk?"

  12. Glad I gave you an idea for a blog post and I think your mom's gift of the Mad Hatter's Tea Party sounds truly inspired! And yes, I really can't wait for my oven among other things! But as I look out in my yard at the area which was totally demolished for the utility trench and see it now, looking even better than before, I'm holding on to the hope that my interior will one day be the same, much better than before!

  13. Rose ~ It is indeed an eternal tea party, and as partial founder of the feast, a seat at the table will always be saved for you.

    I'm glad you went with the "scoon" pronunciation since I was afraid that loons would be under-represented in the poll. ;-) "Just to be pretentious," eh? Georgia and her snobbery, you and your pretention - what is it about scones that brings out this uncharacteristic haughtiness?

    You really need to get yourself a tin of that tea next year! I'm going to start reminding you in October. You'll love me for it. :-)

    And funny you should mention... The Mad Hatter just would not let up with that question. So the rest of us got out our mobile internet devices and did a web search, and this is what we came up with. ;-)

    Daphne ~ Of course it will! I hold out the same hope and vision for our house, which is currently disrupted and chaotic with remodeling flotsam and jetsam as well. It'll all come together and be just lovely, like your yard - only better! :-)

  14. I learnt the 'WANT' thing from my cats - they do it all the time :O) Lapsang Souchong has a lovely smokey taste - gorgeous, will have to read up on its history as I know nothing about it! By the way, I was a non-snobby Lit student and post grad student - but that's not why I say SCON - that's just the right way to say it. I suspect Charles Dickens and George Eliot would agree with me :OP Anyway, it's the way us folk oop north speak (she said, wearing a flat cap and carrying a whippet)... (Anything north of Watford is 'the north' to those shandy-drinking southerners!!) :O))
    I will now retreat probably having insulted the majority of the UK population in one way or another... (If you need footnotes and/or a translation of any of the above please get in touch!).

  15. Barbara ~ Ah, of course! I should have recognized it, but am not quite fluent enough in Feline. :-)

    Speaking of being able to speak a second language, in addition to my handy-dandy Cockney Rhyming Slang dictionary, I also keep my British-to-American Translator and my Dictionary of UK Slang and Colloquialisms close at hand. It was emails and conversations with our friend Iain that prompted me to find (and often use) these indispensable references, but recent conversations with thee have made them even more crucial. LOL!

    And thus it is that I have learned that "shandy" is beer or lemonade. Go, me! :-) The rest of your comment I understood without assistance, and it cracked me up. I love the image of you in a flat cap, toting a whippet (only in my imagination the whippet keeps turning into Ben the Bunny!) So Dickens and Eliot would take your side when it comes to proper scone pronunciation, eh? (Name-dropper! And you claim you weren't a lit snob.) ;-)~

  16. It's tea time so I skipped ahead and read your tea and scones (rhymes with stones) blog today. I loved the poll feature - very fun to know that I'm in the majority though I realize that doesn't necessary make it right.

    Let me go on record to say that the best cup of tea I ever had was at high tea at the Ritz and it was a chocolate tea and I've never had a cup of chocolate tea since. I LOVED it. So your blog made me dig a little deaper and there are lots of chocolate teas other there. I would like one that is as you describe with cacoa nibs and not actual "chocolate". I googled chocolate tea and the Tisano brand seemed to have promise. Thanks for reminding me about chocolate tea - I had forgotten all about it!
    The scones looked very yummy and I was impressed to know that you could cut in applesauce. I'd like to try that just to see what it looks like!
    I enjoyed your conversation with your friends - they certainly did have a nice variety of points-of-view!!

  17. Jo ~ Ha, cheater! You are soooo busted! LOL I knew you wouldn't be able to wait till you worked your way up to this post. ;-) Well, tea time is a perfect time for it, I can't deny that!

    I don't believe I had ever had a chocolate tea before this Naughty & Nice (Jots down a reminder for possible Christmas present for Jo next year...shh, don't tell!), though I do enjoy Roastaroma in the evening sometimes as a coffee alternative, and it has carob in it (plus I add a dash of chocolate soy milk to it).

    I can just see UK Barbara rolling her eyes right about now. LOL

    I'm glad you found a possible fix for the chocolate tea craving this post re-awakened! :-)

    I have to admit, as much success as I've had using applesauce as an oil replacer in baked goods, I was skeptical of it as a margarine replacer. But since Janet's scones had turned out well, I went for it. I didn't expect a crumbly dough texture to result, though - but it did! Awesome.

    Yes, that was quite a little meeting of the minds around that table! :-) I LOVE the Mad Tea Party scene in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, which has always been one of my favorite books. (I've always thought it was Monty Python before there was a Monty Python!) :-) In fact, since I just finished "The Tao of Pooh" last night, and it'll take a week before the library gets in "The Lives and Times of Archy and Mehitable" for me (a recommendation from UK Barbara), I've gotten down my own copies of Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass to read next! :-)

  18. Have to correct you slightly, beer AND lemonade make a shandy :O) Well go the foot of our stairs, I had no idea such reference works existed, must have a look! OK you caught me out, I was a snobby literature student, I can still sneer magnificently at the mention of Danielle Steele... and did I mention George Eliot just lived a few miles from where I live? We have the George Eliot Hospital, and the Middlemarch Business Park (!!!). I actually work in a very old house once owned by Charlotte Brame who by was a 19th Century Romance writer. We even have a blue sign on the front of the building advertising the fact. Must dash, toodle-pip, ta-ta for now etc Bxx

  19. Ignore grammatical errors in the above - I need tea :O)

  20. Just had to say - had a look at the British to American translator - hilarious! I put a few words in... :O)

  21. That is some super-duper-looking tea. All I need is some applesause and I can make those great-looking scones, pronounced.....having just watched a travel show about Edinburgh......skoooones ;-). Also loved the pics of Punky and the Pups.

  22. "Because you cannot ride either one like a bicycle"...

    of course!

    Why didn't I think of that? Such a perfect answer.

    You've made me want to revisit the annotated version of Alice and Wonderland/Through the Looking Glass; have you read it? It's full of background and curiosities, explanations and the culture/society of the times.

    I don't believe they managed to come up with such a good answer as that for raven riddle though!

  23. Barbara ~ Oh, feel free to correct me anytime I manage to bugger up the Queen's English! :-D

    So a Shandy is beer ANd lemonade - mixed together?! Hmm. Interesting. Well, I've never had it, so I'm in no position to judge, but may I say that it at least sounds appalling? I mean, I love both English beers and English lemonade (which bears little resemblance to ours), but I can't imagine combining them.

    It sounds like you live and work in a perfect place for a snobby former English Lit student with a magnificent sneer! :-) I've never heard of Charlotte Brame (at first I thought you were trying to type Charlotte Brönte and that you really DID need some tea, STAT! LOL), but to get to work in the former home of a 19th Century romance writer, well - that's got to be an inspiring venue for you! (I do hope your work involves writing and photography, since you're brilliant at both!)

    I'm glad you're enjoying the Translator! What words did you add?

    Spudly ~ Ach, tis a pity ye didna have some scoooooons rrready so ye could eat them durin' yer wee show about Edinburrrrah! Get yerself some applesauce, laddie, so ye can make some for St. Patty's Day!

    You'd love this tea. It tastes as super-duper as it looks!

    I'm glad you enjoyed the Punky & Pups pics!

    Rose ~ That answer was perfect, but only because the riddle wasn't "How is a Fish like a Writing Desk?" since we know that you can actually ride a fish like a bicycle! :-)

    No, I've never read the annotated version, but I'd love it! I enjoy all that background, "inside baseball" stuff. I'll check my library, thanks for mentioning it!

  24. lovedyour rooster mugs:) and i vote stone...scone

  25. I get to do boring office stuff at work unfortunately, yawn - gives my mind plenty of time to work on my more arty side.

    Shandy is nicer than it sounds! Lager and fizzy lemonade (or 'pop' as we call a fizzy drink)... very nice. Having said that I now prefer red wine :O

    LOL! No I really did mean Charlotte Brame, quite a prolific writer by all accounts. (

    Oh that translator! Well, I put in 'bugger' (really has to be said with a Brit accent to get the full effect), and it got that very wrong! LOL! You can use it when you're describing a naughty or cheeky person i.e. 'you little bugger!', or, maybe if one of the cats has got one on him and is about to do something wicked, or naughty, or is just in one of those odd moods cats get, you could say 'Watch out! Charlie's looking to bugger'! Oh and 'bloody hell' definitely doesn't mean what it says it does!!! I was shocked and appalled :O) And crisps aren't fries - they're savoury potato snacks in thin slices, salted, and in various flavours. Would you call them chips? I find the differences in the language fascinating...

  26. Rose ~ O happy news, my library does have The Annotated Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, and I'll be picking it up today! :-)

    DD ~ Thanks for mentioning my chicken mugs! :-) My kitchen used to be decorated completely in chickens because I'd mentioned to my mother once when I was in high school that I'd like to have a chicken theme in my someday-kitchen, and she and my grandparents immediately started inundating me with chicken stuff at every gift-giving event. Never mind that I was still 6 or 7 years away from having my own kitchen! And once I did, people who came over would see it and think, "Wow, this chick (lol) really loves chickens!" So they'd get me more chicken stuff as gifts, and the chicken theme spread to the dining room. A few years ago we had our kitchen remodeled and I decided it was time for a theme change. So we went with a much more modestly decorated Tuscany theme, and I kept just my very favorite chicken items, including my mugs. :-)

  27. Barbara ~ Well, I'm glad your mind is able to enjoy some creative, arty wandering at work, at least! Your blog sure is a wonderful outlet for your writing and photography, I really enjoy it!

    It was the English lemonade's fizzy attributes that made it so special to us, but I still can't imagine mixing it with beer. I'll have to take your word for it, and toast your shandy review with my own glass of red wine! LOL

    Oh dear, it seems I found a dodgy translator! :-) Even I knew that English "crisps" are our "chips" and your "chips" are our "fries!" However, I thought "bloody" pretty much meant what they say it does, and didn't realize "bugger" had more innocent uses. I have noticed that these translator/dictionary devices seem rather fond of the naughty words and definitions! But maybe that's to help keep people out of trouble. We amused our friends Iain and Sophie on our first visit to see them when we kept mentioning the "fanny packs" we'd brought with us. Once they'd stopped giggling, they explained what that meant there and told us that in public, we'd best call them "bum bags." :-) We also made them all big-eyed when we got back from a foray into the village and reported being surprised to see a young couple making out on a busy street corner. We hadn't seen such a public display of affection during our two weeks there, and that pair was really swapping some serious spit! Of course, I & S were wondering why the police hadn't been called, and so we had to get the English meaning of "making out" sorted out! LOL

    The difference in our languages fascinates me, too. And certainly can be entertaining!

  28. P.S. Barbara ~ I forgot to mention poor Charlotte B. Thanks for sharing that link. She was indeed quite prolific, especially given her shortened life, but I never heard of her nor her works nor her aliases. Since her Dora Thorne is available on the Project Gutenberg site, maybe some slow day when I have nothing much to do (yarite!) I'll have to check it out. :-)

    I found it amusing that so many people, including men, wrote under her Bertha Clay pseudonym after she died!

    Have you ever taken a photo of Charlotte's house?

  29. Fanny packs??!? Ooh er Mrs! (You really have to know Carry On type humour and/or Frankie Howerd to understand that phrase)! Titter ye not... Forgot to say, 'bugger' can be use as an expression of annoyance or frustration, for example, you go to the shop to get something, come back with something else and forget the original item. That would definitely be a case of 'oh bugger', or 'bugger it'! It's quite mild really - honest (trust me I'm English) :O) 'Bloody thing' or 'bloody hell' is nowhere near as strong as, ahem, their interpretation. Strangely enough I haven't taken a pic of Charlotte's house, but will rectify that in the morning. It's supposed to be haunted... bloody ghosts, they get everywhere :O)

  30. lol, I totally remember your fish bicycling!

    As a fellow lover of Alice in Wonderland, I think you'll enjoy the annotated version. It's been years since I've read it, I must dig it out and stick it my bed to have a browse through...we can confer on interesting tidbits.

  31. Barbara ~ Alas, though a fan of much British comedy I was ignorant of Carry On type humor and Frankie Howerd, I looked them up. But had never seen nor heard the shows nor the comedian (interesting he died the day before Benny Hill, whose show I never did like!)

    I've heard "bugger" used as a verb and a noun quite a bit on film and TV, and probably most often used as in your latest example, but I never knew it was mild. Milder even than "oh, screw it!"? More like, "Oh gosh darn it!"? :-) Of course I trust you, and I trust you will soon turn me into a fluent speaker of proper English. ;-)

    Oooh, you work in a haunted house! Is it Charlotte's ghost who's supposed to wander its halls? Can't wait to see the photo.

    Rose ~ I started reading the introduction to Annotated Alice last night, and I'm already intrigued! (I'd forgotten that Lewis Carroll wasn't his real name).

    Yes, let's read it together and confer! We'll have our own little Annotated Alice book club going. :-)


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  • THE HUMANE GARDENER ~ Nancy Lawson
  • THE WORLD WITHOUT US ~ Alan Weisman

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