Montréal isn’t exactly the quiet countryside of Aimée Wimbush-Bourque’s youth.
The Simple Bites (simplebites.net) blogger grew up in a house without electricity or running water near Lake Laberge in Canada’s Yukon territory and learned early on the importance of knowing how to preserve food so that it will last all winter.But once she started a family in suburban Montréal, Wimbush-Bourque decided that even though she didn’t have to maintain those foodways, she wanted to. Her blog has always drawn readers with a similar homestead mentality, and her debut book, “Brown Eggs and Jam Jars” (Pintail, $25), is thoughtfully divided so that you, too, can cook (and plant and preserve) by season.
Wimbush-Bourque will be in Austin later this week to sign copies of the book and chat with readers at an event Saturday from 1 to 3 p.m. at Métier Cook’s Supply, the cookbook and kitchen supply store at 1805 S. First St.
Make-Ahead Currant Scones
Perhaps it is my British heritage weighing in on the subject, but I staunchly believe everyone needs a reliable scone recipe in their back pocket, preferably one that can be made ahead, frozen, and then baked with minimal effort on a Sunday morning. This is my recipe for such occasions, as well as my for my annual jam swap, when the taste testers come out in throngs. I’ve been known to stash a batch of these currant scones in the freezer to facilitate a smooth (and tasty) breakfast in bed served up by Danny and the kids. Genius? Pretty close. To variation, add a tablespoon of fresh orange or lemon zest for a fragrant scone.
— Aimée Wimbush-Bourque
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. fine sea salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold
1/2 cup dried currants
1 large egg
3 Tbsp. pure maple syrup
3/4 cup light cream, chilled
Combine the flours, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk to blend. Grate the butter on a box grater into the flour mixture, and toss gently with your fingers to combine. Mix in the currants.
In a small bowl, beat egg with a fork until frothy. Pour in the maple syrup and the cream and beat again. Pour the liquid into the dry ingredients and light mix together with the fork until the dough comes together.
Turn the dough into a clean, lightly floured counter, and use your hands to bring it together. Press it into a disk that is 8 inches in diameter and about 3/4 inches thick. Cut the dough into 8 wedges, and then cut each wedge in half.
Transfer the raw scones onto a parchment lined baking tray and place in the freezer. When solid, store them in a plastic bag in the freezer. When ready to bake, place them on the baking sheets, brush with a little more cream or milk.
Bake the scones at 375 degrees for 22 to 25 minutes or until light golden. Serve warm, preferably with homemade jam. Serves 8.
— From “Brown Eggs and Jam Jars: Family Recipes from the Kitchen of Simple Bites” by Aimée Wimbush-Bourque (Pintail, $25)