Sunday, November 7, 2010

Never throw anything away

The ice rink where I work has the most wonderful concessionaire. A skating mom herself, she transformed the concession stand from garbage-central to an honest-to-goodness healthy cafe; she makes everything from espresso brownies to salmon burgers with a hot plate, panini grill, and toaster oven.

Like all fast-food stands, she's got "meal deals," but hers are a sandwich, Italian soda (your choice of flavors), a homemade cookie, and a piece of fruit. Last week I grabbed a banana which I never ate. By the time I remembered it, it was, well let's call it "overripe."

Did I mention never throw anything away? I roasted the apple peels (from the home made applesauce), some garlic cloves, and the last of the summer's tomatoes in a 300F oven for 60 minutes, then simmered it all in apple cider for 30 minutes. Run through a food mill, then smooth with an immersible blender. Tomato-apple soup. Recipe on Mahlzeit.

Apple banana scones

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour (for October unprocessed, use all unbleached wheat flour)
1 cup unbleached wheat or whole wheat flour
½ cup oats
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
2 T cane sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¾ stick (6 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, cut into bits (or grate frozen butter. Make sure the grater is also frozen)
¾ cup walnuts, crushed

3T light corn syrup
1 large egg plus one egg yolk
1 overripe banana, mashed
2/3 cup apple sauce
1/3 cup plain yogurt or sour cream

Preheat oven to 400F (375 if you have a baking stone in your oven) and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Adjust a baking rack to the middle position.

Beat together the liquid ingredients and set aside. You can leave out the corn syrup; your scones will just be a little less sweet. If you leave it out, replace the liquid (more apple sauce or sour cream works fine).

Mix the dry ingredients, then cut in the butter with a pastry cutter, knife or your hands until it resembles a coarse meal. Stir the nuts into the flour mixture. Add the liquid mixture to the flour mixture. Stir until just combined. Dough will be very sticky.

For drop scones, place in tablespoon scoops onto a parchment-covered baking sheet about 1 inch apart on and bake for 15 to 17 minutes, or until pale golden. Transfer the scones to a cooling rack and let them cool slightly before serving.

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