Italian + Chocolate Cherry Scones
Martedi’ mattina! Tuesday Morning! Another Italian lesson with a new challenge. Una parte dei compiti (a part of the homework) from last week was a listening activity. A recorded conversation between two individuals, which Carmela assured us, were speaking “normalmente”. Normally? I was sure it was recorded at warp speed (velocita’ warp). Sort of like Captain Kirk listening to Klingon! We played it and replayed it over and over, countless times, a sentence at a time. Admittedly, I can only speak from my own experience. It seems that, if I order the difficulty of the skills needed to learn another language, reading comes the easiest, followed by writing, speaking, and then listening. At first glance, one wouldn’t think listening would be so challenging, until confronted with a three-minute recording. Sounds short, right? Not! After 45 minutes of having our ears glued to the speakers of our computer, we thought we could safely say the conversation concerned a date from an Internet dating service gone wrong. Gluttons for punishment, we did ask for more because comprehending spoken Italian is our most challenging hurdle. I am not complaining, however. We thoroughly enjoy the whole thing. Find a companion and sign up for a foreign language because it is so enjoyable and so good for your brain.
All of this leads up to the second half of Tuesday morning. A chocolate cherry scone and a coffee at Alterra Café on the Lake. I came home determined to duplicate those scones, so they wouldn’t be just for Tuesday mornings. Health-wise, these scones are not high in fat and have just a bit of sweetness. They are quite delicious, quite moist and don’t require butter or jam. Pair them with a small, fresh fruit salad. As we all know, dark chocolate is healthy for you. A painless way to include it in one’s diet! They are done when the bottoms are a bit browned. The tops will not have much color.
Chocolate Cherry Scones
(makes about 10)
- 3 cups flour (use unbleached for good health)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 scant tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces (don’t cut ahead of time)
- 1/2 cup dried cherries
- 1/2 cup dark chocolate pieces or semi-sweet chocolate chips, as a substitute
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup low-fat buttermilk ( try dried buttermilk and follow package directions)
- 1/2 -1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350°. Grease cookie sheet.
- Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Add dried buttermilk here.
- Cut in butter and then add cherries and chocolate pieces..
- Measure the buttermilk (or water if using dried buttermilk )in a glass measuring cup. Add two eggs and whisk well to combine. Add the vanilla extract and whisk again.
- Make a hole in the flour mixture and pour the liquid in the center. Using a large wooden spoon, mix just until ingredients are combined. Don’t over-mix or your scones will be “tough”.
- Spoon out dough in large spoonfuls onto cookie sheet. Bake for 20 minutes.
*** Freeze any left-overs, as they do dry out quickly.
Photos will be coming! I’m waiting for a sunny day with good light.
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