Friday, October 4, 2013

Ginger Squash Scones

This Sunday will be the last regularly scheduled Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market of the season, but stay tuned for some additional markets around the beginning of November and just before Thanksgiving, to coincide with Fair Valley Farm CSA pick ups. On October 6th, you can look forward to the following offerings from Sweetwater Farm, Fair Valley Farm, and Tiger Lily Art Company:

tomatillos (make some smokey tomatillo salsa to last you through the winter)
heirloom tomatoes, romas, and tomato deals: 10 lbs/$18, $20 lbs/$30 (makes some sauce)
watermelon, honeydew melons, cantaloupes, and other heirloom melons
Bartlett pears (delicious on pizza or in pancakes)
Akane apples and Asian pears from SLO Farm (make apple sauce)
A wide selection of winter squash (make these ginger squash scones)
corn, green beans and yellow wax beans (make a savory corn pudding)
pepperoncini, poblanos, red hot cherries, anaheim chiles, and assorted pepper bargain bags
eggplants, fresh spring garlic, and onions (make baba ganoush)
cucumbers and zucchini (make some tsukemono pickles)
carrots, cabbage, kohlrabi, and celery (preserve some kimichi)
French sorrel and cutting celery (great as a pesto for soup)
new potatoes and beets (make some mashed potatoes)
fresh herbs including dill, parsley, basil, and cilantro 
bietola, kale, chard, and a variety of lettuces (make lettuce wraps)
dried beans and grains from Camus Country Mill (make teff grain muffins)
jams, salsa, and pickles from Sweet Creek Foods
pastured chickens from Fair Valley Farm (cook up a pot of Pueblan chicken tinga)
floral arrangements from Tiger Lily Art Company

If, in a couple of weeks, you are missing the market, you can see more of your favorite farmers at Sweetwater's Pumpkin Day on Saturday Oct. 19, 10 am-2 pm at the farm (83036 Weiss Rd. Creswell, OR 97426). There will be farm tours and pumpkins for sale, but don't be fooled by these orange gourds that Erica gave our kids. Despite their pumpkin-like appearance, these imposters are actually crazy giant overgrown summer squash! 

On this last market of the season, be sure to pick up a selection of real winter squash (pie pumpkins, butternut, acorn, delicata) to store in you cellar for future winter soups, curries, and pies. With my latest batch of roasted squash, I made these delectable scones, studded with candied ginger. Sized as mini-scones, and they were the perfect midday snacks for the whole family to keep us going through the greying days.

Ginger Squash Scones
makes 8 regular or 16 mini-scones
1 cup all-purpose unbleached flour
1 cup whole wheat flour such as Red Fife from Lonesome Whistle Farm
6 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
1/2 cup roasted squash puree
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 large egg
1 tablespoon candied ginger, chopped into small pieces

1. To prepare the roasted squash, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Halve the squash and scoop out the seeds (save them for roasting, if you feel industrious).  Place the squash cut side up on a baking sheet and roast until soft, about 30 minutes. Scoop out the squash from the skin and mash with a potato masher. Use 1/2 cup for this recipe and save the rest for soup or more scones (it freezes well).

2. In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the chopping blade, place the dry ingredients and the chopped sage, and pulse to combine.

3. Add the butter, and pulse about 10 or so times. You want to retain some small pieces of butter. Transfer the flour mixture to a large mixing bowl.

4. In a large measuring cup, place the squash, egg and buttermilk. Mix well. Pour into flour mixture. With a dinner fork, fold the wet into the dry as you gradually turn the bowl. When dough begins to gather, use a plastic bowl scraper to gently knead the dough into a ball shape.

5. Transfer the dough ball to a floured board. Gently pat into a 6” circle, or for mini-scones, make two smaller circles of dough. Sprinkle with the chopped candied ginger. If the dough feels sticky, chill it for about 15 minutes in the freezer or longer in the refrigerator. With a pastry scraper or large chef’s knife, cut each disc into 8 triangles.

6. Optional (but recommended by mrslarkin): place the scones on a wax paper-lined sheet pan and freeze until solid. Once they are frozen, you can store them in a plastic freezer bag for several weeks.

7. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Place frozen scones on a parchment-lined sheet pan, about 1 inch apart. Bake for about 18 minutes for mini-scones or 20 - 25 minutes for regular sized scones, turning the pan halfway through. They are done when a wooden skewer comes out clean. Enjoy.

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