Thursday, October 23, 2014

Pumpkin Almond Scones with (dead easy) Salted Caramel Sauce

I, like much of my mother and grandmothers before me, stress-bake.

I currently have no hot water heater.

There is only one picture of these, since I was busy not strangling the person theoretically installing the new hot water heater that is still sitting, prettily, disconnected, in my basement rather than taking pictures of my baking.

I wanted non-complex comfort food again, and I wanted something that tasted of fall. I'd been meaning to make another batch of Vanilla Almond Scones, but they weren't enough. I needed spices. I also needed to use a partial can of pumpkin. (Hey, I'd picked up a dozen cans of pumpkin at the store at 25c a piece since they're all dented. Oops. I'm using a lot of pumpkin.)

On the other hand, one of my critiques of the previous version is that they were a bit dry, and not very sweet. Pumpkin usually helps with both of those things, retaining moisture and giving just a little bit more sugar to the mix. Now they're pretty good without the caramel sauce, but it was the spirit of using leftover ingredients! Really! And they're 5x better with caramel. Isn't everything?

Pumpkin Almond Scones with Salted Caramel Sauce

3 cups of almond meal/ground almonds/almond flour
2 teaspoons of gluten free baking powder (or ¾ teaspoon of baking soda)
1/4 cup (60g) of butter, soft
1 heaped tablespoon of honey
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice (or 1/4 t clove, 1/2 t nutmeg, 1 t cinnamon, 1/2 t allspice, 1/2 t ginger)
2 eggs

Salted Caramel Sauce:
1/4 cup butter
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/8 half and half
1/8 teaspoon sea salt (or a 1/4 teaspoon table salt)

Preheat oven to 325F. Mix almond flour and baking powder, then add butter, honey, vanilla, pumpkin, spices, and eggs. Mix well into a soft dough, and take the mass and place it on a greased baking sheet or seasoned stone. Pat into a round an inch to an inch and a half thick. Cut into eighths and separate slightly. Bake for 30-40 min, or until just coming brown at the edges. Remove from pan and let cool.

In a small sauce pan, melt the butter over medium low heat, add in the brown sugar, stirring constantly. When the sugar has dissolved, add in the half and half and salt. Stir until smooth. Drizzle over scones, and put the rest in a container for later use. There will be later use...

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