grocery store

So, my battle with grocery stores wages onward.

Look, I like my grocery store as much as I can like an awful disconcerting nightmareplace, but of course they don’t have baking powder. They did have buttermilk, which made me feel badly about going up to some salesclerk and saying “I’m sorry, do you not have buttermilk?”, as though buttermilk were a dietary staple. Hah! I don’t even really know what buttermilk is. Butter combined with milk? Maybe. Maybe. In any event, they had it, and she was very nice about it. But they did not have baking powder, which meant I had to walk to another grocery store which is… awful. Why do they never have everything you need in one easy to locate aisle? Why? Why?

WHY MUST LIFE BE A VALE OF TEARS AND WALKING? WHY IS THERE NEVER A TEAM OF EUNUCHS TO CARRY YOU IN A LITTER?

Obviously, I wanted to offer up another song about supermarkets being distressing, but I guess the Clash is the only group who have chosen to grab on to that particular low hanging fruit, so here’s The Fields of Athenry, which is also about food making all kinds of problems for people.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v9InnXP64To?version=3]

So! Don’t steal corn. Good talk.

Now, a scone recipe.

1.5 pounds all purpose flour. (They sell it in 2 pound bags, don’t use the entire bag)
4 oz sugar, plus additional 3/4 tbsp for topping scones (1/2 a cup, this is about 1/2 a cup)
1 Tbsp baking powder (a fucking elusive substance, like gold)
3/4 tsp of baking soda
1 tsp of salt
9 oz of butter cut into walnut sized pieces (2 and 1/4 sticks)
1 1/5 cups of Buttermilk (Jesus Christ, just use the 1/4 cup. No one hates a tiny amount of extra buttermilk).

1/2 lb of dried, unsweetened cranberries (8 oz, they’ll say how many oz on the package. Probably 5. You should buy two packages).
4-6 apricot halves canned in light juice (heavy syrup will make the scones too soft and sweet).
Whipping cream to coat scone tops.

Heat the oven to 325 degrees.
Drain apricots and chop roughly. Set on paper towels to drain. Do not add them to the mixture until they become matte. You can blot off some of the moisture.

Sift dry ingredients into a mixing bowl. Add butter using a paddle attachment to your mixer or a pastry blender manually. Combine until the butter is complete dispersed. Add fruit and buttermilk until dough forms. Drop spoonfuls (the size of a whole apricot) onto lightly greased and floured cookie sheet 2-3 inches apart. Press down until they are about 1 inch thick. Brush with cream and sprinkle with sugar. Bake until lightly golden, around 15 minutes.

Should yield 15 scones.

Okay, as you can perhaps tell from some of my notes the recipe originally had British units because – actually, I genuinely can’t remember if I got this during the phase in college when we were all trying to pretend we lived in England, or from an actual British girl. God, I hope it was the latter.

Probably not, though.

Anyhow! This makes translating the units borderline impossible if you can’t do math. Suffice to say, a pound is about 16 ounces. 8 ounces are about a cup. So a pound is about 2 cups.

It took me about half an hour to figure that out.

And I ended up using 5 oz of cranberries, because I did not figure out the conversations beforehand. I’m sorry about that. But they were very good, even with only 5 oz of cranberries!

Also, I forgot to buy whipped cream, because I wrongly thought the recipe meant that it should be used on the scones after they were made, and I figured I was going to a party where there would be cream and jam. That’s not what they meant! They meant it should be used to give the scones a delicious, glazed coating. They probably would have been better with one, admittedly.

Does this happen to everyone? I mean, are people following recipes perfectly all the time? No one is doing that, right? Because people are fundamentally lazy and somewhat churlish and inclined toward corn stealing?

Oh, here’s what the scones looked like:

scones

My biggest problem though was how do you transport food like this? I took them to a housewarming, and didn’t want to carry them in a basket because 1) I don’t have a basket and 2) While the idea of skipping through the streets with a basket seemed charming, I had to ride the subway, and I worried that it would get jostled around and they’d fall out.

I ended up transporting them all in a Tiffany box that used to contain champagne glasses. It was “a decision.” It also worked pretty well, but sometimes I worry that when you do stuff like that, you’re pushing the Holly Golightly comparisons a little hard. So. Tupperware? Enormous tupperware containers for this purpose? What do you do?