OK … so she’s not really my daughter by birth but she feels like she’s one of my children. And she’s really French – born in France, lives in Paris.
Last summer Flo and her family (husband, Francois and baby boy, Oscar) arrived for a visit in Maine. It had been years since I’d seen her. Lots of years! Enough time for her to go from teenager to business woman, to wife and then mother.
We had a very sweet reunion in Maine … this picture is of the two of us in Bangor airport. What fun it was to see her again.
Today they’re coming back over and to Florida. I am leaving to meet them at the airport in a couple of minutes and the anticipation is making me crazy – crazier than usual! They’ll be here with us for a couple of days and then they’re headed to Miami and to see a bit of the state.
Last year in Maine it was freezing cold and rainy. Today in Florida it’s super hot and humid. Warm enough for a swim! Last year, Boulette was just starting to think about walking and he had a bath in the kitchen sink. This year he’ll be walking and dancing and we have a tub in this house. And a pool (I bought him some swimmies!)
There are white caps on the lake this morning. When I look outside from the warmth of the wood stove, it looks (and sounds) a lot like the ocean. It’s a bit misty, too. Not a warm spring day in Belgrade!
We have a copy here of The Settlement Cook Book. Copyright 1944, the “Victory” (26th) edition published by the Settlement Publishing Company during WWII. Compiled by Mrs. Simon Kander. On the inside of the front cover is a lovely “autographed” photograph of Mrs. Simon Kander (if you click on the link above, there is a photo of the page!) who compiled the recipes and (not to worry) they’re “tested” recipes from “The Milwaukee Public School Kitchens, Girls Trades and Technical High School, Authoritative Dieticians and Experienced Housewives” … what a hoot!
As you may know, I love to bake. When I’m up here I like to use what we have around – much of which has been here for 50+ years. This cookbook is one of the things I love (and who’d ever have thought that it’s a rare, collectible book!) The big mixing bowl, is another. Anyway, I digress … Chapter One is entitled, “Household Rules” and it tells you all you need to know about keeping house – literally. Including, how to light a “modern” gas range, set a table, and how to make soap. One of my favorite recipes, though, is a recipe for “Scotch Scones” which I’ve used as the base of my recipe below and have adapted over the years according to what I’ve been eating. Since I’m now eating gluten-free, I’ll give you the basic scone recipe and then gluten-free!
Maine Blueberry “Scotch” Scones(best served warm with a cup of coffee or tea on a cold May day, inside by the wood stove when Lake Messalonskee looks like the ocean!)
2 cups bread flour (I use unbleached all-purpose flour)
4 teaspoons baking powder
2 Tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 Tablespoons butter, cold!, cut into small cubes
2 eggs, well beaten
1/3 cup buttermilk or cream
1 cup Maine blueberries (frozen or fresh)
Wash your hands now and take off your rings … this gets messy!
Preheat oven to 350°.
Mix together flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. Add butter and with your hands, mix butter into flour mixture until it is all blended in by pinching it between your thumb and fingers. Flour will look like larger grains and no lumps of butter will remain. Add eggs and buttermilk and mix until just combined. Fold in blueberries. Toss dough onto a floured surface and pat or roll to a square about 3/4 inch thick. Cut into triangles about 2 inches across. (This time, though I patted mine into a circle 3/4 inches thick and cut it into large wedges.) Transfer to greased cookie sheet, brush with egg white, and sprinkle with your choice of brown sugar and cinnamon, organic raw cane sugar, cinnamon sugar, etc. (My traditional sprinkle is with Turbinado sugar but today I used brown sugar and cinnamon.)
Bake for approximately 15 minutes.
For the gluten-free version, substitute Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free baking mix for the flour and add 3/4 teaspoon of xantham gum but the rest of the recipe is the same.
Now, for a cup of tea and a bit of knitting … new on the needles this morning, the Queen Bee’s Tweed Boulette Blanket. My French daughter and her family are coming to visit after waaaayyy too many years and I’m worried that the baby, la boulette, will be cold. So, what does a good “grand-mere” do? … She knits one!