The Best Maple Oatmeal Scones

My Phoenix friends will remember the particular glory of a cafe called Chestnut Lane that closed a few years ago after ruining all of our lives with the world’s best chocolate chip cookies, chopped chicken salad, and maple oatmeal scones.

I’m still mad at owner Polly Levine about it, but was thrilled to discover that the maple oatmeal scones I remember likely came from this Barefoot Contessa recipe. Same scones, at home, and they’re easy. Hooray.  I like to keep uncooked frozen scones in my freezer for emergency weekend breakfasts — or Saturday afternoon sweet tooth pangs, depending.



Make extra glaze, and glaze them twice. It’s great stuff. (Add salt to the glaze, though.)



I like to bring these to friends in need of comfort. It’s sophisticated nursery food combination: oatmeal, maple syrup, but so much better.

By |2013-06-18T08:12:09-07:00June 18th, 2013|Recipes|3 Comments

Christmas Breakfast Monkey Bread

This is genius breakfast — the kind you mix the night before in just a few minutes, then pull from the oven on Christmas morning, browned and glistening. It comes to you from my future mother-in-law, who is wise about Christmas breakfast and about simplicity in life.

Clearly, I need help with that.

RECIPE: Christmas Breakfast Monkey Bread

18-24 frozen Rhodes rolls

1 1/4 cups brown sugar, divided

1/2 cup butter, melted

1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

2 tablespoons powdered cook and serve butterscotch pudding mix

1/2 cup pecans, chopped, or slivered almonds — whatever nuts you have

The night before, place the frozen Rhodes rolls in a greased Bundt cake pan or an angel food cake pan. Sprinkle the rolls with 1 cup of the brown sugar, distributing the sugar as evenly as you can, and set aside. In a separate bowl, mix the 1/4 cup brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, butterscotch pudding mix, and pecans together. Pour or spoon this mixture over the frozen rolls. Cover with a kitchen towel and leave on the counter overnight.

In the morning, bake in a 350 degree oven for 30-40 minutes, and serve hot.

Don’t forget the butter — though even the one Christmas I did, we still ate it. Yes, it’s that good.

By |2012-12-05T05:24:09-07:00December 5th, 2012|Recipes|3 Comments

Easy Sticky Buns for Birthday Breakfast

For Tyson’s birthday, I like to make him a cake. We talk about it, plan it, and then when he’s out of the house one afternoon I bake it and surprise him. It’s our small, dorky tradition, but I love doing it. This year, he wanted a cheesecake from Tammie Coe (humph), so I baked him a birthday breakfast instead. These pecan sticky buns are so fast, and so easy, that I made them while T was sleeping in.  I ran to the grocery store, bought puff pastry, threw these together, and they were coming out of the oven just as he woke up.

You’re there with me now, right? They’d be excellent for easy desserts, the perfect thing to bring to brunch, and easy enough to have on hand in the freezer for Domestic Enthusiast emergencies.

By |2012-10-08T07:07:15-07:00October 8th, 2012|Recipes|0 Comments

Recipe: Lemon Crepes

My girlfriends like to come over and spend the night at my house, because they know that in the morning, there will be lemon crepes.



In a bowl with a pouring spout, mix:

2 eggs, 1 1/2 cups milk, 1 cup flour, 1 tablespoon melted butter, 2 tablespoons sugar (I use stevia), 1/4 teaspoon salt, and the zest of one lemon. Whisk vigorously.

Cook crepes in a nonstick pan. (Good directions here. Or, if you’re feeling shy, go buy a crepemaker. That helps.) The key is to use lots of butter in the pan, a shy quarter-cup batter, medium-high heat, and don’t try to flip until the crepe is browned and crisp on the bottom.

Remove the crepe to a plate. Sprinkle with a big heap of powdered sugar, then spread it around the crepe. Squeeze about a tablespoon or two of fresh lemon juice over the top. Pretend you’re in france.


By |2012-01-15T12:33:36-07:00January 15th, 2012|Recipes|0 Comments

Pumpkin Brunch

Scenes from my pumpkin brunch:

(My new mercury glass bell jar from FOUND — a beloved birthday gift from Christina.)

Pumpkin mini muffins with maple cream cheese icing — my most evil creation of the year.

Pumpkin teapots (above) and pumpkins on the orchids (below):

Pink calla lilies with pumpkin undertones:

Happy friends:

A buffet piled high with pumpkin things: soup and muffins and yogurt-granola parfaits topped with dried cranberries and pumpkin seeds.

Utensils lined up on a tray:

Pumpkins lined up on my table:

An autumnal salad with Gruyere, toasted walnuts and pomegranate seeds:

I cheated and used paper napkins, and you know what? The world is still turning.

Lynne Bonnell’s burlap pumpkins came, too:

Roasted sweet potatoes with rosemary:

Mimosas like mad:

Piles of pumpkins, everywhere I could fit them:


Homemade quiche — my first, and I’m converted (recipe here):

Treats galore:

And another one for the road:

(Pumpkin muffin recipe coming tomorrow, and I’m not sure whether to apologize or curtsy. They’re diabolical.)

By |2012-01-11T12:26:56-07:00January 11th, 2012|Parties|0 Comments


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