You may recall some weeks ago that I was complaining about the aftertaste of boxed mix biscuits. I had been in a mad dash between activities but was still craving a just-from-the-oven biscuit to go along with a bowl of cheddar corn chowder. Even though I added some dried Rosemary to the dough for a lovely flowery taste I could still tell that these were convenience biscuits.
For some reason, short cut foods make me feel really … lonely. I have no other way to explain it. Chalk it up to the mystery and power of food to strengthen, comfort, and express love. If you are going to break bread alone, lonely-filled biscuits are not the way to go, because you’ll just eat more to get rid of that empty feeling.
Despite how sad I know you are feeling for me right now, I didn’t really give those biscuits another thought once I left my dishes in the sink – until I got an e-mail from the Scone Lady at Victorian House Scones.
Like a sympathetic kitchen fairy godmother she wrote,
Your post on cheddar corn chowder caught my eye – and particularly the comment about the aftertaste of scone/biscuit mixes.
Should you ever be interested, I am the owner/founder of Victorian House Scones. We manufacture (by hand) fabulous scone and biscuit mixes – for I too object to the box taste of many mixes. Baking should be fun, it should be easy, and you should be happy with what you put on your table – whether you have all day to play in the kitchen, or whether you are like most of us and have a few hectic minutes each day.
If you are interested, I’d be happy to send you a bag of scone or biscuit mix to try – we’d love to prove that not all boxed mixes have that aftertaste.
I have to admit, I was charmed and comforted a bit to know that someone out there cared enough to rescue me from bad boxed mixes.
Plus, I adore scones.
I wrote back,
“I would love that! Yes, please send me some samples.”
Each mix makes about 16 scones/biscuits, which is a lot for someone who often sits down to a table set for 1. (When I mentioned this surplus to my swim teammate friend Monica she suggested that I simply bring the rest to our ritual morning coffee after Saturday swim practice. I would have, except for one problem: I gave half to my brother’s family and then ate the rest. Sorry, Monica.)
The Victorian House Scones, unlike the Proper English Scones I make, call for buttermilk. The problem with buttermilk for an intermittent baker like me is that I’m always left with a half-empty carton of buttermilk that goes off before I get around to figuring out what to do with the rest of it. But this is easy to rectify. I simply “soured” some regular milk using the short cut trick of 1 tablespoon of white vinegar per 1 cup of milk and let it sit for about 15 minutes.
Other than that, the scones were easy to mix and assemble and they were delicious eaten warm and smothered with butter and raspberry jam. No from-the-box taste at all! A word of note: Victorian House Scones are sweet-tasting (there is sugar listed in the ingredients). And personally, I like a scone that isn’t as sweet. In general, Americans have too much sugar in their diets and any opportunity to cut back on sugar, do it. With a scone, you can rely on fresh jam to deliver the sweetness you crave. But that speech aside, Victorian House Scones are delightful.
I knew I would be hard to please when it came to scones, but what I was really interested in was the biscuit mix. Would my biscuit standards be met? A winning point before I even began rolling out the dough was the Scone Lady’s suggestion to freeze the biscuit rounds on a cookie sheet, and then seal them into a freezer bag so I would have them handy whenever I wanted a fresh biscuit. Simply set a frozen biscuit round on the counter while the oven preheats and then pop them in for the usual 10 minutes or so. I love this idea! And that is exactly what I did.
Not only were the Victorian House Scones head and shoulders above regular boxed biscuit mix, I’ve been enjoying them here and there for nearly a month, with each one tasting fresh, warm, and full of comfort. So, thank you Scone Lady and Victorian House Scones for making my table set for 1 feel a little less lonely! We all have busy lives, and quality “short cuts” like Victorian House Scones allow for the creative act of pulling something you made out of the oven without sacrificing good taste.
For those interested in trying Victorian House Scones, check out their ordering information here. Their website also has lots of ideas for creating different flavored scones (I’m going to try some of the other fun flavors myself) and you can also order cookie mixes and gift boxes.