Well, I had a nice surprise recently. The kind of surprise that, well, really surprises you! You know, the kind that makes you wonder....."Where have I been?"......"How did I not see this coming?"
Now that I have your attention......
It was a surprise that probably wouldn't get most of you all that excited, but it was such a blessing to me! I've shared some about my Italian grandparents' garden here and how I love fresh figs, etc., but I'm not sure I told you about the mulberry tree that grew right near the back corner of their garage. As we'd run along the side of the building to a back garden area, there it was, right behind the back left corner....The tree with the beautiful, long-ish berries, in shades of mauve and purple. They were mild and delicious and something special that gramma and grandpa had in their yard that we didn't. I've always thought it would be so wonderful to have one in my own yard........just another thing to remind me of my grandparents.
So, you may be getting close to figuring out my surprise. The other day the hubby and I were out looking at the progress of my little garden (Yes, it did get planted) when we looked up, a few feet to the back left of the garden, and what did we see? There was a mulberry tree, with mulberries all over it! Believe me when I tell you.....I've never seen that tree before, in the 14 years we've lived here! We had a row of pine trees growing along the property line which we had removed because they were unhealthy and being uprooted by wind storms regularly. This mulberry tree is actually growing up around one of the remaining stumps!
I called for a ladder and immediately started picking!!
Now, I ask you, wouldn't I have noticed this mulberry tree if it had been growing there for awhile?? How could I have missed it?? Well, whenever and however this little tree got planted......I consider it God's special little blessing for me! It's something that connects me to my childhood, my grandparents, and just makes me happy, friends! (Now.....if we can just stay ahead of the birds!)
So, after hearing my little story, would you like to know what I did with the first mulberries I picked? I made these yummy scones! I adapted a recipe from Cook's Illustrated and added a lemon glaze. They're perfect for your breakfast or brunch table or for a snack at any time of day! So, without further ado....
Mulberry Scones with Lemon Glaze (makes 8)
1 stick unsalted butter, cut in half (still in wrapper) and frozen
1 1/2 cups mulberries (Gently stemmed, washed, and placed in freezer until needed)
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup sour cream
2 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. lemon (or orange) zest
2 tblsp. unsalted butter, melted, for brushing
1 tblsp. sugar, for sprinkling
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tblsp. whole milk or heavy cream
1/2-1 tsp. lemon (or orange) zest
First, whisk the milk and sour cream together and put back in the refrigerator. Then whisk together all of the dry ingredients and lemon zest. Next, holding onto the wrapper, grate the butter on the larger holes of a box grater.
Add the grated butter to the dry ingredients and toss with your fingers until totally coated. (You don't want to overhandle the butter or it will become too soft.) Next, add the milk/sour cream mixture and fold it in with a spatula until just combined.
Transfer the dough to a well-floured surface and dust the top of the dough with a little more flour. Knead the dough 6-8 times until it just holds together in a rough ball. Add flour, if needed to prevent sticking.
Roll the dough into a square, approx. 12"x12".
Fold into thirds.
Lift the short ends and fold into thirds again, forming a 4" square. Place on a flour-dusted plate and put in the freezer for 5 minutes.
Now, take the dough out of the freezer and roll it into a 12" square again. Sprinkle the mulberries over the dough and press down, gently, to secure.
Loosen the dough from the surface and roll it into a tight log.
With the seam on the bottom, press the log into a 12"x4" rectangle.
With a floured knife, cut the dough into 4 equal rectangles, then each rectangle into 2 triangles.
Place the triangles on a parchment-lined sheet, brush with the melted butter, and sprinkle with sugar. Bake at 425 degrees until the tops and bottoms are golden brown, about 18-24 minutes.
Cool the scones on a rack for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, whisk together the glaze ingredients.
Spoon the glaze over the scones, let set for a few minutes, and serve.