November 15, 2011

Cannellini Crostini


This was another of the dishes served at my sister’s baby shower.  Once again, I made a large batch for the party, but am posting a scaled-down version here.

I've been really into using dried beans lately.  Their simplicity, versatility, heartiness, and economy are unparalleled. And they can be turned into and endless variety of dips and spreads that are an inexpensive addition to any party menu.  The rosemary makes this version particularly nice during the winter.

The method for soaking and cooking dried beans can be found in a previous post on using dried garbanzo beans for hummus (also linked below).

Cannellini Crostini

Makes about 3 dozen crostini.

2 cups cannellini beans, soaked and cooked (from 6.5 ounces dry beans)
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small sprig rosemary (½ minced, ½ whole on stem)
1-2 cloves garlic
salt, to taste
sundried tomatoes, sliced into thin strips
1 baguette or other rustic bread, sliced about ¼-inch thick (I used Peter Reinhart’s whole wheat pain all’ancienne.) 

Optional: Rub bread slices with the cut side of a clove of garlic, brush lightly with olive oil, and toast in a 350° oven until golden brown – 10-15 minutes.

Heat oil over medium heat in a small pan.  Then add whole garlic clove and rosemary (minced and whole).  Simmer garlic and rosemary in oil for about 5 minutes.

Remove any large pieces of rosemary and set aside. Press (or mince) the cooked garlic clove.

In a medium bowl, combine oil, garlic, and beans.  Beat with electric mixer until they begin to form a cohesive mass.  (Don’t puree, leaving some whole beans adds nice texture to the spread.) 

Season with salt, to taste.

Spread a small amount (2-3 teaspoons) on toasted baguette slices and top with a sliver of sundried tomato.

Variation: Serve as a dip/spread in a bowl with crackers, pita, or bread on the side.

November 14, 2011

Mini Quiche with Chard and Red Onion

mini quiche with chard and red onion
I made these for my sister’s baby shower, and they were a huge hit!  I made a large batch for a total of about 150 mini quiches.  The recipe below is scaled down for a smaller audience.

Mini Quiche with Chard and Red Onion

Makes about 60 mini quiches.

2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon salt
2½ sticks unsalted butter (20 tablespoons), cut into ½-inch pieces
6-7 tablespoons ice water

Combine the salt and both flours in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine.

Add butter and pulse until all the butter is coated in flour and the largest pieces are the size of small peas.
Add the water, a few tablespoons at a time, and pulse until the mixture forms a cohesive mass.

Turn out onto a floured surface.  Gather and press the dough into a ball.  Add flour or water if the dough is too sticky or too dry.  Divide into 3 pieces.  Form each piece into a ball, flatten into a ½-inch thick disk, and refrigerate for at least one hour (and up to two days).

Preheat the oven to 325°F.

Lightly grease 3 mini muffin tins (24 cups each, 1¾-inch diameter muffin cups), or you can reuse one muffin tin.

Remove chilled dough from refrigerator, one piece at a time.  On a well flour surface, between two pieces of wax paper or plastic wrap, or on a pastry mat, roll the dough until it is 1/16 inch thick. 

Using a small round cookie or biscuit cutter (2 to 2½ inches in diameter), cut circles from dough.  Gently press the circles of dough into mini muffin tins.

Bake for 10-12 minutes.  The crust will not be completely cooked at this point, but should be set and barely beginning to brown on the edges.  

Allow to cool in the pan for 3-4 minutes.  Then carefully remove to cool on a wire rack.



1 small bunch of chard, washed and chopped
2 teaspoons olive oil
½ large red onion, chopped
4 teaspoons butter
2 eggs
2 egg yolks
¾ cup whole milk
¾ cup cream
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
pinch nutmeg (freshly grated, if possible)
4 oz freshly grated aged goat cheese, or other flavorful cheese (I used Midnight Moon “Cypress Grove,” and it was perfect.)

Preheat the oven to 350°F

Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange par-baked shells on the parchment paper.

In a large pan over medium, heat 1½ teaspoons of oil. And chopped chard and cook, stirring, until wilted – about 3 minutes. Remove chard from pan and set aside. 

Add butter to the pan. When melted, add chopped onion and a pinch of salt. Cook onion over medium-low heat for 20-25 minutes, until translucent, soft, and sweet. Removed from heat; add to chard and gently toss to combine. 

In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, yolks, milk, and cream; salt, pepper, and nutmeg. 
Divide chard mixture between the par-baked pastry shells.  Top each with a sprinkle of cheese and about a tablespoon of egg.  Alternatively, you can stir the vegetables and cheese into the egg mixture and divide evenly among all pastry shells.

Bake for about 14 minutes, until mixture is just set.

Serve warm or at room temperature.
November 12, 2011

An Eco-Friendly Baby Shower

In just a few short weeks, I’m going to be an aunt!  I can’t wait!

Back in September, I helped plan and catered a baby shower for my sister.  The menu was designed to be eco- and pregnancy-friendly, with a focus on high-quality, seasonal, organic ingredients for mama, baby, and guests.

The invitations were printed on recycled paper produced with “100% green hydroelectric power” (great paper and great customer service). 


Beverages were served in mason jars that will be re-used for canning.DSC_0502

The Menu

  • Mini quiche (recipe): whole wheat pastry crust, wilted rainbow chard, caramelized red onions, Cypress Grove “Midnight Moon” goat cheese.
  • Cannellini bean crostini: from dried beans; with rosemary, garlic, extra virgin olive oil,  and sundried tomatoes.
  • Spinach salad: dried cranberries, toasted pumpkin seeds, “Bellavitano Raspberry” cheese, and homemade balsamic vinaigrette.
  • Carrot cake: with cream cheese frosting; made with organic ingredients; icing dyed with natural, vegetable-based food coloring.









September 14, 2011

Baby Cake

This cake was my last big baking project in my DC kitchen.  I was going to do a “wordless Wednesday” post, since we’ve been so ridiculously busy lately getting ready for the move and getting in some quality time with our friends (and the city) before we go.  But I couldn’t help myself…

I’ve been in this kitchen for just over three years, but I’ve learned so much in it.  My blog was born here, and there’ve been lots of other firsts along the way.

A little over a year ago, I made my first-ever three-tiered cake for a post-wedding party for a couple of my favorite people.  This past weekend, I made my last cake in DC for that same couple’s baby shower!

DSC_0310Getting the frosting color just right.
(I’m wearing a Caps t-shirt for the occasion.  How Washingtonian of me.)

I planned ahead and spread the baking and assembly out over two nights, but  I probably should have taken three.  The night before the shower was a late one (and appropriately so, since pretty much every other big baking project I’ve ever done has kept me up until the wee hours) – but it was totally worth it.

For the cake, I went with a 12-inch base tier of Cooks Illustrated’s “Fluffy Yellow Layer Cake” and a 9-inch top tier of Cooks Illustrated’s Sour Cream Fudge Layer Cake, which didn’t rise anywhere near as much as I thought it should and was more like a brownie or flourless torte than a layer cake.  I ended up needing to make a second batch (which also didn’t rise much) to get the height I wanted for the top tier – but the flavor was amazing.  The frosting was a basic vanilla buttercream.

DSC_0323Post-cake chaos…
I don’t know what I’m going to do without this island.

DSC_0320Are you really taking my picture at 3 o’clock in the morning?

DSC_0342The top. Inspired by this design.



DSC_0380Shower time!

I’m certainly going to miss my kitchen and excuses to make huge cakes for my DC friends. 

Only 14 days until our big move…

August 30, 2011

Celebration and Anticipation

As August draws to a close, we have so many reasons to celebrate:  birthdays, anniversaries, coming out of two natural disasters (within 5 days) unscathed, and anticipating the beginning of a brand new chapter of our lives!

anniversary cake

August has always been one of my favorite months.  Yes, it’s hot.  Yes, its arrival means that summer freedom is coming to a close and school will soon be back in session.  But it’s also the month of my birthday!  (And my mom’s; I love that we share the same day.)  For over a decade, it was also the month of an annual extended family beach trip.  And for the last three years, it’s been the month of Brian’s and my wedding anniversary.  So it’s a great month.

white cake slice

This year August was even more eventful than usual.  I spent almost every weekend working on a film (rather than my usual sleeping in and going to the farmers market and cooking and blogging).  I was also in the midst of a will-we-or-won’t-we-be-moving-across-the-country-next-month quandary, which was causing me more than a little anxiety.

white cake with buttercream
Happily, everything seems to be turning out even better than we’d hoped.

dinner at st. arnolds

A couple of days before my birthday, I was offered a wonderful and unique opportunity for a new job at an organization whose work I admire and that is actually in the same field as my graduate degree. (Imagine that.) I accepted the position on the morning of my birthday, which happened to also be the same day as my first earthquake ever. Maybe it means that this coming year is going to be particularly …. vibrant? Moving? Earth-shaking? Or maybe it doesn’t mean anything.

moules frites

The new job means a new city and a cross-country move. Actually, we’re moving back home. We’ll be within driving distance of our families, close to lots of friends, and finally in a position to get a house with a yard, where I’ll finally get to grow some vegetables of my own(!).  

strawberry cake

I've learned a lot in my 5 years in DC. We’ve enjoyed our city life, but we’re at a point where being close to our families is a priority, where the comforts and ease of small-town living are more alluring, and the inconveniences of the city are starting to outweigh the advantages. A five- to ten-minute commute is also pretty appealing.

birthday candlesGuess what?  I blew them all out in one breath.

Our destination town is Fayetteville, where Brian and I first met and where we both attended the University of Arkansas. Fayetteville is a charming place nestled in the beautiful Ozark Mountains.  It’s a top college town and boasts a lively arts scene, a brand-new American art museum (nearby), and a 60-stall farmers market.  It’s a place where college football passions run high and cost of living runs low.  It’s also the home of some of my favorite people in the world.  

strawberry cake slice

Oh, but it does get hot there.  And there’s no Trader Joe’s within a 199-mile radius. (The closest one is exactly 200 miles away.  I checked.)  Whole Foods is 180 miles away.  I’m already anxious about where we’ll find our favorite cheeses.  (Yes, I mean you, Santa Teresa.) Is it possible to buy cheese online?   On the upside, there is a great locally owned natural foods store (a co-op, in fact) that I’m excited to explore.

September 28 will officially be our last day in the District.

DC to AR

John F. Kennedy said that “Washington is a city of Southern efficiency and Northern charm.” 

He knew what he was talking about, and there are a number of things we won’t miss about the city, including the WMATA with its myriad problems and those of the DC/MD/VA drivers who refuse to use their blinkers or turn their lights on in the rain.

rooftop view of DC

On the other hand, there are plenty of things we will miss about DC. I’ll miss my kitchen and its humongous island (but hopefully I’ll find a new one with equally excellent counter space). We’ll miss having the year-round Dupont farmers market and our neighborhood14th and U farmers market, Ethiopian food, and great grocery stores.  We’ll miss the U Street Corridor; wine happy hour and bocce at Vinoteca; fried oysters and gypsy jazz at 1905.  I’ll miss the shopping (but not the inconvenience of getting there).  We'll miss impromptu weekend trips to New York City that don't require a plane ticket. We’ll miss the view from our rooftop deck and seeing the Washington Capitals play live.   We’ll miss the parish we’ve grown to love and the beautiful Masses at the Basilica.  Most of all, we’ll miss our DC and New York friends. But we'll have great excuses to come back and visit.

spritz on the roof
So, here’s to August 2011, and all that the next year has to offer!

August 29, 2011

Fresh Lima Beans

Lima beans are not sexy.  No one gets excited about lima beans, right?  What child – or adult for that matter – doesn’t feel a little put-off by the thought of a can of lima beans? 
But have you ever had fresh lima beans?  Like right-off-the-farm fresh?  If you had, you might just think lima beans were pretty fantastic. 

I’d been wanting to try them fresh since I came across them at the market last summer.  I was determined not to miss them this time, so I snagged the first pint I saw. 

Here are a couple of simple, quick, healthy recipes that exemplify the philosophy that food doesn’t have to be complicated to be amazing. A few fresh, quality ingredients and a few minutes in the kitchen are all you need.  This small batch lasted the two of us through 2 ½ meals, but it can also be doubled or tripled for a larger group.  You can jump to the recipes by clicking the links below.

Cooking Fresh Lima Beans
Rustic Lima Beans with Sausage and Bread
Lima Beans and Pasta

Note: Raw lima beans must be cooked before they are eaten.

Cooking Fresh Lima Beans

Yield about 2 ½ cups.

10 ounces (about 2 cups) fresh lima beans (or more)
2 cups of water (per 10 ounces of beans)
¼ teaspoon salt (per 10 ounces of beans)

Rinse beans.  Combine beans and water in a pot and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium-high and continue boiling for 15 minutes.  Drain and rinse beans.

Add salt and ½ cup water and boil an additional 2 minutes.  Remove from heat and allow beans to cool in water (which allows them to absorb the salt).

rustic lima beans with sausage and bread

Rustic Lima Beans with Sausage and Bread

The white wine adds a nice brightness and elevates to another level this otherwise very basic dish.

Serves 2 as a main course.

1 ½ cups cooked lima beans
2 teaspoons olive oil
½ medium yellow onion, chopped
2 teaspoons butter
4 ounces fresh sausage (I used North Mountain Pasture’s Lincolnshire sausage, seasoned with sage, mace, and ginger. Yum.)
½ cup dry white wine
1 clove garlic, cut in half

8 slices baguette or other rustic bread
extra virgin olive oil, for brushing

Rub bread slices with one half of garlic clove and brush lightly with extra virgin olive oil.  Arrange (oiled side up) on broiler-safe baking dish and set aside.

In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat.  Add onion and cook until translucent, about 4-5 minutes.

Add sausage and cook, stirring and breaking into small pieces with a wooden spoon, until very little pink remains.  Add butter, beans, ½ clove garlic and white wine.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until wine is cooked off.

Meanwhile, turn broiler on high and toast bread until lightly browned, about 3-4 minutes. (Watch the bread closely, as it can go from “almost there” to burnt in no time.)

Serve beans and sausage warm alongside toasted bread.

Lima Beans and Pasta
Lima Beans and Pasta

I particularly love this dish because it’s like a non-soup version of  pasta e fagioli, evoking similar flavors and nostalgia.

Serves 3.

1 cup cooked lima beans
2 teaspoons olive oil
½ medium yellow onion
1 ounce bacon, chopped fine
6 ounces fresh tagliatelle or dried fettuccine
½ cup passata (strained tomatoes)*
1 ounce parmesan, freshly grated

Fill a medium saucepan about ¾ full of water and set to boil.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat.  Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally for 2 to 3 minutes.  Add bacon and cook until onions are translucent (about 8 minutes). 

Stir in passata and season with pepper.  If your tomato puree did not already have salt added, season with salt to taste.

When water is boiling, cook pasta a minute or two short of al dente.  Reserve ½ cup of the pasta cooking liquid and drain pasta.  Add pasta and cooking liquid to bean/sauce mixture and cook down for 1-2 minutes.  (The starches in the pasta water and the cooking help the sauce stick to the pasta. 

Serve topped with freshly grated parmesan.

*Passata (or strained tomatoes) is a staple in Italian kitchens.  It’s made from raw tomatoes “passed” through a sieve (hence its name) and packaged without any additives.  Strained tomatoes are becoming more and more common in American grocery stores.  Boinaturae and Pomi are both great brands.  You can also make your own from fresh tomatoes!  If you can’t get strained tomatoes, substitute tomato puree or plain tomato sauce. 


August 1, 2011

Homemade Hummus from Dried Garbanzo Beans

Getting away from canned foods has meant learning to cook with dried beans.  There are a number of advantages to cooking with dried beans versus canned beans: they’re much cheaper, have more flavor, are free of BPAs, and contain only the amount of salt that you add yourself.

Because using dried beans requires that I plan in advance, getting into the swing of it has been slow-going.  The first time I cooked with dried beans, I was nervous, but the beans turned out great, and I was so excited about how easy the process was; I resolved to cook dried beans again soon.

Weeks and weeks went by, and before I knew it, I was feeling nervous and reluctant again.  But I finally made myself do it.  Once more, I was amazed at how easy it was.  “I must do this again soon!” I told myself.  Can you guess what happened next?  I forgot about dried beans. 

One of my issues was that they tell you soak the beans “overnight,” but they don’t tell you what to do with them the next day.  Well, dear recipe writer, some people don’t have the luxury of staying home all day to cook beans.  They have to leave the kitchen and go to work.  What are they supposed to do with the beans in the mean time? Let them continue to soak?  Will something bad happen to them if they keep soaking? Can I put the whole pot in the fridge?  Do I drain them and put them in the fridge?  Drain them and leave them on the counter? 

I soon realized that “overnight” was code for “8 to 10 hours.”  Oh, okay, so I can soak them while I’m at work and cook them when I get home!  Perfect.  Except that I have to actually remember to put them in the pot before I leave in the morning.  I’ve found that it helps to leave the bag of dried beans sitting on top of my purse the night before.  Nine times out of 10, I’ll realize that they’re there for a reason (and not because I need to take them to work).  Even though I figured out this little soak-the-beans-while-I’m-at-work trick months ago, I still get a little panicky every time I read “soak the beans overnight.”  I just have to keep reminding myself that they can soak by the light of day.

Almost a year later, I’m finally starting to get this dried bean thing; I’ve cooked them twice this week!  Twice!  In one week!  I feel very accomplished.  On Wednesday, we made a pot of black beans to go with our turkey taco salad, and yesterday we made hummus! 

One of the great tragedies of the months and months it took me to come to terms with dried beans was that, in all that time, I didn’t make hummus.  We love hummus around here.  It’s been a go-to party appetizer for years. It’s easy, quick*, healthy, filling, inexpensive, and always a hit.  Brian has been talking about having hummus for months, but if you know me, you know that nothing but the most dire circumstances will motivate me to buy premade anything I am capable of making from scratch.  So it was a great relief to finally make hummus again!  

*Preparing the dried beans takes time, but if you cook a big pot (see below), you can freeze them to have on hand whenever you feel like whipping up a batch of hummus!

Homemade Hummus (from dried beans)

printable recipe

Preparing the Beans

This recipe makes about 6 cups of beans (2.5 pounds) – enough for 3 batches of hummus.  It can easily be halved or doubled.
1 pound (2 cups) dried garbanzos beans (a.k.a. chickpeas)
½ teaspoon salt (optional)
Pick through the beans, removing any dark or shriveled beans.   Rinse thoroughly in a colander or mesh strainer.
In a medium-sized pot, cover the beans with cool water and soak for 8-10 hours.

Drain the beans.  Return beans to pot and cover with water by about 2 inches.  Bring to a boil and cook for about 2 hours, until the beans are tender.  Add water, as needed, to keep the beans covered.

When the beans are cooked, remove from heat and stir in ½ teaspoon salt, if using.  Allow the beans to cool for 30 minutes.  They will also soak up the salt during this time. 

Drain the beans.  (If desired, you can reserve the cooking liquid to thicken soup.)

Set aside what you will be using immediately and freeze the rest.  The most convenient way to do this is to freeze 2-cup portions in freezer-safe containers.

(Frozen beans can be thawed at room temperature in a bowl of cold water, in the refrigerator, or in the microwave.)

cooked garbanzo beans

Making the Hummus

Yield about 4 cups.
2 cups (12 ounces) cooked garbanzo beans
¼ cup tahini (sesame paste)
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons water
juice of 1 lemon (2-3 tablespoons)
1 clove of garlic
1 teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Combine all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor.  Process until smooth.  If the hummus is too dry, add water and/or olive oil to reach desired consistency.

Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Note: If you prefer your hummus particularly garlicky or lemony, adjust seasonings to taste.

July 17, 2011

(Healthier) Chocolate Chip Cookies

whole grain chocolate chip cookies

Most days, I spend most of my time thinking mostly about food.  Buying it. Chopping it. Mixing it. Cooking it.  Eating it.  The bounty of summer makes it easy to eat lots of fresh fruits and vegetables.  Lately though, I’ve been harboring an irresistible urge to bake something sweet.  I deftly staved it off several times last week by grilling veggies or whipping up a pasta dish or other relatively healthy dinner item.  On Friday, I finally decided that if I was going to succumb to the desire, I was going to make the most of it by attempting to create a slightly healthier version of a baked treat. 

These cookies contain 25% less butter and about 17% less sugar than traditional chocolate chip cookies.  And they’re made with mostly whole grains:  whole wheat flour in place of half of the white flour and a generous amount of oatmeal.  Of course, the true measure of a good cookie is the resulting flavor and texture, and these are not lacking in either.  They boast the ability to satisfy even the most discriminating palate – buttery, sweet, moist, chewy, chocolatey, with a bit of crunch.  Their hearty yet delicate texture is just as good on day 3 as it is fresh out of the oven.  The cookies can easily stand on their own without the addition of chocolate, or they can accommodate any number of other additions, such as dried cranberries or walnuts. 

In a word, they’re perfect.  I like them even better than traditional chocolate chip cookies.

whole grain chocolate chip cookie

Whole Grain Chocolate Chip Cookies

Yield 60 2" cookies.

1 cup whole wheat flour (“pastry” flour if you have it, but I used the standard variety)
1 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 ¼ teaspoon salt
¾ cup brown sugar
½ cup white sugar
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons milk
1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
1 ⅓ cup rolled oats (not quick-cook)
1 cup bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips
optional additions: ½ cup dried cranberries or raisins; ½ cup chopped pecans or walnuts

Combine the flours, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.  Stir and set aside.

Cream together the butter and sugars.  Add the vanilla, eggs, and milk and beat until well combined.

Add the flour and mix until just combined. Stir in the oats, chocolate chips, and any other additions.

Using a small cookie scoop or a spoon, distribute dough balls (about the size of a heaping tablespoon) about 2 inches apart on a cookie sheet.

Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until just beginning to turn golden around the edges.  Be careful not to overcook them.  (In  my oven, 8 minutes and 30 seconds was the perfect amount of time.)

Wait about 2 minutes before removing to a rack to cool.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

The cookies keep well stored in an airtight container for several days.

whole grain chocolate chip cookies and milk

July 2, 2011

Red, White, and Blue Scones

blueberry-cranberry scone

Just in time for Independence Day, a breakfast (or anytime) treat in patriotic colors.

blueberries and cranberries 

I had my first scone at the campus bakery my freshman year of college.  It was moist and flaky, slightly cakey, and just the right amount of sweet; in other words, love at first bite.  I must have caught them on a good day because I’ve heard several people say that they didn’t like scones (campus bakery variety included) because they always thought they were too dry and crumbly.  Not so with this homemade version.

scone dough

Even though I had every intention of trying my hand at scone-making, it took me ten years to finally do it!  It turns out that they are easy and quick and can take as little as 30 minutes, start to finish.  Perfect for whipping up on a lazy Saturday (or holiday) morning.

scone dough cut into wedges

This recipe is fairly flexible and can accommodate a variety of fruit/flavor additions.  I usually prefer my scones with dried cranberries and orange zest, but 4th of July weekend and the abundance of fresh berries at the market called for a little something extra.  The sweetness of the fresh blueberries is a nice compliment to the tart cranberries and the orange zest infuses the entire dough with a hint of citrus.

scone ready to bake

Red, White, and Blue Scones (Blueberry-Cranberry Scones)
adapted from “Classic Currant Scones” from The Joy of Cooking

Yield 8 scones.

2 cups flour
⅓ cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter, very cold and cut into ¼-inch pieces
½ cup heavy cream
1 large egg
1 heaping teaspoon orange zest (from ½ medium orange)**
½ cup dried cranberries*
¾ cup (4 ounces) fresh blueberries

for topping
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1-2 tablespoons coarse raw sugar

*I went with a combination of dried and fresh fruit because I didn’t want to create too much extra moisture in the batter.  However, based on my results, I think it would work well to substitute seasonal fresh berries, such as raspberries or (pitted and quartered) cherries, instead of dried cranberries. 
**Lemon zest also works well in place of the orange zest.

Preheat oven to 425°F.

In a large bowl stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.  Using two knives or a pastry blender, cut in butter until the butter pieces are well coated in flour and about the size of small pebbles. (Do not allow the butter to become fully blended with flour or form a paste.)

In a separate bowl, whisk together cream, eggs, and orange zest.

Very carefully fold the blueberries and cranberries into the dry ingredients.

Add the liquid ingredients to the dry and gently fold together (using a spatula or wooden spoon) until all the flour is moistened.  Use your hands to gather the dough and press against the sides of the bowl to collect any remaining bits of batter and form a cohesive ball.  Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and pat into an 8- to 9-inch disk.  Cut into 8 wedges using a bench scraper or butter knife. 

Place scones at least 2 inches apart on a large baking sheet.  Brush tops with cream and sprinkle with coarse sugar. 

Bake for 12-15 minutes until tops are golden and the centers are set. 

Cool on a rack for 5-10 minutes and serve warm.  (Or serve at room temperature.)

blueberry-cranberry scone