A Scone Redo: Ginger-Cardamom Scones with Cocoa Nib Chocolate

A few years ago, I came up with these ginger-cardamom scones with cacao nibs that my kids loved. Now, cocoa nibs are kind of expensive to buy already shelled from cocoa beans (though if I see a bag of cocoa nibs at Costco or Sam’s Club, I will probably buy them!) so instead of trying to shell cocoa beans myself, I buy chocolate bars with cocoa nibs in them and use those instead. All I have to do is chop up the chocolate bars and use the chunks. So it is almost like using cocoa nibs, right?

I also reworked the previous recipe a little bit: first, by doubling it, so that everyone in our family of 8 could have at least 2 scones, then by reducing the butter, so that I wouldn’t have to cut 2 tablespoons off a second stick of butter to make 16 scones. I’m trying to save a little money. Ok, maybe I’m really just trying to save myself a few seconds.

I also used salted butter in this recipe because it was all the butter I had left. I was out of unsalted butter and hadn’t had a chance to go buy more. Normally, unsalted butter is what I would use.

I currently use Godiva chocolate with cocoa nibs because we live right by an outlet mall with a Godiva outlet. And Josh was able to pick up a 10 pack of these chocolate bars for me from there for about $2.50 each. That’s about what I’d pay for good chocolate bars from the grocery store so I thought it was a good deal. I do use them sparingly though so I don’t go through all 10 bars too fast.

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Pomegranate Soda

This year for Christmas we got a DrinkMate Sparkling Water and Soda Maker. Our children like soda, but we don’t really want them to have all that extra sugar. With this soda maker we can make our own soda and control the amount of sugar. This particular machine can carbonate any drink. What you make is limited only by your imagination.

Our children did take that a little far though. They were all spouting off things that we could use the soda maker for, and many of the ideas were bizarre. Our 10 year old had the oddest ideas. He wanted to carbonate gravy. I don’t know what he thought we could do with carbonated gravy though.

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Homemade Oreos

My mom got The Messy Baker for Christmas.

It looked interesting, so I decided to look through it. Inside there was a recipe for homemade Oreos, which is something I’ve wanted to make for a while. We got the whole family together, and the younger ones “helped” by sifting flour (and making a mess) and pouring ingredients in bowls. These cookies ended up being an all day project, as they had to chill in the fridge. We also didn’t have a big enough baking sheet and had to do it in three batches. I didn’t exactly do a great job filling them. They are kind of sloppy, as you can see below.

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Pomegranate Syrup

In November, I wrote a blog post about making pomegranate jelly. I gave a small jar of that jelly to a neighbor who invited us to their party. The neighbor has a friend with a pomegranate tree that produces a lot of fruit that they weren’t using. Our neighbor knows that we love pomegranates so he bagged up a bunch of them for us!

I had already made enough jelly for the year so I wanted to do something different with this batch of fruit. After quite a bit of thought I decided to make pomegranate syrup. I figured this would be something that could be used for multiple different applications.

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Pomegranate Sorbet

This post started at the end of last year, then life got real busy. It ended up sitting in the draft posts for about a year. Now I am finally finished with it.

This was the third year we have gotten fruit from our pomegranate tree. Each year we have had more fruit. This year I picked 56 pomegranates.

Since they are picked ripe, we need to use them quickly or else they will rot. One of my favorite things to make when I have a lot of juice is sorbet. I like the concentrated fruit flavor, and our children always ask for me to make it.

I didn’t want to use my usual sorbet recipe, because I usually make citrus based sorbets which need a lot of sugar. Pomegranate is fairly sweet on its own. I had issues finding recipes online that I liked. Most of them used other juices in addition to pomegranate, used a lot of water, or way to much sugar. The closest to what I wanted is this recipe from Williams-Sonoma.

While that recipe is close, it does have a few issues. First, it uses corn syrup. Pomegranate and sugar are already sweet together, and don’t require corn syrup. Second, the amount of juice required isn’t very specific. What does 12 pomegranates mean? Some of mine were massive, and a few were tiny.

So, I reworked the recipe a little to fit my needs. Please click the post title Pomegranate Sorbet above to see the recipe.

Pomegranate Sorbet

 

 


 

-Joshua