I have made scones hundreds of times and almost always make Foster’s Market’s scone recipe, which you can find on the blog here. However, I love when friends send me recipes and I am always up for trying a new version of my favorite foods. So when a friend sent me this recipe for banana scones with a chocolate whiskey drizzle, I had to give it a chance. It did not disappoint. While this blog is quickly becoming ‘What alcohol can I put into my baked good next,’ you do not have to put the whiskey in the glaze (see bourbon chocolate chip cookies). In fact, these are just as good without the chocolate drizzle. The chocolate makes this more of a dessert scone. It’s also a great recipe to use up your brown bananas and the caramelizing in the pan make them that much more special. Be warned: the bananas can become mushy and you don’t want to add too much more liquid to the dough – additional flour is needed to ensure that your dough does not fall apart!
Now onto the rambling insights for the week. I found this quote about not needing a ‘gold star’ for your work and it really resonated with me. I learned early on in my career that I didn’t have the luxury of waiting for my superiors to pat me on the back and applaud my work. This does not happen for every little accomplishment you make at work. This is the real world and you are expected to get the job done, do the best that you can, and move on. If you wait for affirmation, you will be waiting a very long time. That said, when someone does compliment your work, it is so much more meaningful. Also, people notice good work even if they do not openly acknowledge it. Live your life each day in the pursuit of making yourself proud. You owe it to yourself.
Gretchen Rubin’s Happiness Project has an entire chapter dedicated to gold stars. Rubin is a gold star person. She seeks approval from her husband and others and she finally had to accept the realization that gold stars are not always given out. That doesn’t mean your work was not appreciated. I could write a short novel of life lessons I learned from reading her book, but I will spare you! I highly recommend buying it and it is a fast read. It is also on Audible if you’re a listen while you work type of person (like myself).
I’ll also leave you with an article from one of my favorite bloggers about his love affair with Julia Child. I periodically read his blog and I have made a few of his recipes. This is an old blog post that I stumbled upon and I could relate to his feelings about Julia. I hope to someday have the kind of free time to immerse myself in all things Julia: adopt an over the top British accent, cook a duck and make fondue all in a day’s work. He shares how something as ‘silly’ as watching Julia Child became a very meaningful daily occurrence for him. It’s amazing how some things stick with you in your life and become so much more important than you could have ever imagined.
Cooking and baking is a complete stress reliever for me. There were times at the Statehouse during the legislative session where I would bake 2-3 times a week to relieve the stress of bill deadlines. A bundt cake or brownies instantly improved morale and I suddenly felt calmer and more in control in an environment that you sometimes have little control over the outcome. I have fond memories of eating Cheerios and watching Sesame Street in my Cozy Coupe with my brother. Or watching my mom make knot rolls from scratch, similar to the garlic knots I recently made. I can remember the smell of the bread and her navy and white striped apron. I hope to someday share these memories with my kids. Have them covered in flour and know that no matter what is happening in this crazy world, you can always get in the kitchen, blast some music, and make something delicious.
Today’s highlight: fresh flowers from my favorite vendor at the farmer’s market at City Market and my desk.
BANANA SCONES WITH WHISKEY CHOCOLATE DRIZZLE
Recipe via Vegetarian Ventures (and Smitten Kitchen)
- 2-3 bananas, peeled and sliced + 1 Tablespoon sugar + 1 Tablespoon butter
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1/4 cup sugar + more to sprinkle on top
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 6 Tablespoons cold butter, cut into chunks
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 egg (plus another egg for the egg wash)
For the drizzle:
- Two ounces of dark chocolate (milk chocolate works too)
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons whiskey
Melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium low in a small skillet. Roll the bananas in the tablespoon of sugar and transfer to skillet. Let the bananas caramelize until they start to brown and break down but remove from heat before they become mushy.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, salt, sugar, and baking soda. Use your hands to incorporate the butter until a coarse dough as formed. Mix in the egg and milk until just incorporated. Fold in the bananas and transfer dough to a floured surface. Flatten dough and make an inch thick dough. Cut the dough into triangles and transfer to a baking sheet. Brush with an egg wash and top with sugar. Bake for 30 minutes