If you are ever visiting friends or family on the island be ready to stay a while. Newfoundlanders are the most welcoming and friendly folk. More often than not you’ll hear these words or something close to it:
“Any in ya?”
For the mainlander unaccustomed to the Newfoundland vernacular, let me explain. The first is “Did you eat yet?” and the second is similar; asking if you had anything to eat lately. It would be considered poor hospitality if someone who was visiting went away hungry.
While the conversation flows someone would put the kettle on to start water for tea, or, if you’re lucky, the tea would still be there from the morning’s brew. Newfoundlanders like their tea strong. It wouldn’t be unheard of to have a kettle on the stove with two or three bags thrown in and then another added every once in a while if the flavour goes down a bit.
When I was a kid I would have my tea in the morning for breakfast, fortified with two large teaspoons of sugar and enough milk added to make the tea a light caramel colour. It almost more milk than tea, but it suited me fine.
The next would be “Giv’us a biscuit.” And the platter of homemade biscuits would come out. Tea biscuits would be the most common. Sometimes they would made freehand or rolled out and cut out with a small glass dipped in flour. It would be heaven to get one just out of the oven and covered in butter.
For special occasions you would get a scone. These are a bit more rich, being made with egg. That’s the recipe I’ve made today. Because the days are getting cooler, and I love the warmth of cinnamon, I’ve decided to make cranberry cinnamon scones. These have a light taste of cinnamon combined with the sweet tangy cranberries. You could use raisins if you like.
Preheat your oven to 450F and combine your flour, salt, baking powder,
sugar, and cinnamon. Cut in the butter. You can use a pastry fork, two regular forks, or your hands. I like to use my hands because I can feel the flour coating the butter pieces. Plus I find it mixes more evenly this way.
BTW, this is a great starter recipe for children. They love to get their hands into things and would love to feel the soft butter squish between their fingers. I would recommend supervision, of course.
Add the cranberries and toss to coat. In a small bowl combine the egg and milk and beat together. Make a well in the middle of the flour mixture and add the wet ingredients. Using one hand, mix together. I suggest one hand because this will be the time the phone will ring and then you’ll have a clean hand to answer it. Mix until it forms a soft dough. Turn out onto floured surface. Hand form into a circle about 12″ in diameter. Cut into eighths.
Place onto greased cookie sheet or parchment or Silpat. I like to have them separated a little so there’s enough room to grow and the sides get a crust. You can place them together more if you like the sides softer. Brush with milk and added crystalized sugar. This is larger than granulated sugar and should be available at most grocery stores. I got mine at Bulk Barn.
Bake for 10-12 minutes in a 450 oven until golden. Let cool and serve with butter and jam. Enjoy with your favourite tea. Any in ya, yet?
Cranberry Cinnamon Scones
- 1 3/4 cup All purpose flour
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 4 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/3 cup butter cold, cut into small 1/4" pieces
- 1/2 cup craisins Can use raisins instead
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup milk
Preheat oven to 450F Blend or sift together flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, and cinnamon. Cut in finely the cold butter. Add craisins and toss gently to coat.
Combine egg and milk. Add to dry ingredients and combine together until a soft dough forms.
Turn onto a lightly floured surface a knead gently 6-8 times. Form into circle about 12" in diameter and 1/2" thick. Cut into eight wedges.
Place on greased baking sheet or Silpat. Brush with milk and sprinkle with sugar. Bake in preheated oven for 10-12 minutes. Yield 8 scones.