FIELD & FOREST

yogurt desserts

berry (and cherry!) vanilla yogurt muffins

breakfast, desserts, summer, sweet, vegetarianRachel SandersComment
berry vanilla yogurt muffins - field + forest

We bought a cherry tree! I mean, a house!

Either way, woohoo!!!

Hopefully that helps to clarify my wee vacation from posting (sorry, sorry). It has been a wild ride. And because home-buying normally entails moving, we've also been in a mess of boxes and bins and DI (the Utah equivalent of the Salvation Army) donation piles for the past couple of months. I tried to relocate the kitchen to the new house before moving other rooms so that I would be able to keep things relatively organized and track items that we use on a regular basis. Also so that we could eat stuff other than frozen tamales every day. But in spite of my best efforts, there are certain things I haven't been able to find since we moved in, like our bread pans and our ground cinnamon. And my eyebrow tweezers, which has nothing to do with kitchen stuff, but I looked in the mirror this morning and let's just say time is a factor in pinning these down.

Ironically, around the same time that our cherry tree started fruiting, we found the cherry pitter, which felt like I big high-five from the universe in the midst of a sea of moving chaos. I may have unruly eyebrows, but I am eating lots of baked cherry things! Highly recommend.

berry vanilla yogurt muffins

Full disclosure: these muffins were made not just because we had cherries, but because I accidentally bought vanilla yogurt at the store while picking up ingredients for tzatziki. D'oh. Thank goodness we've all figured out that yogurt is a fabulous thing to stick in a baked good. Or a fried good.

These are adapted from a yogurt muffin recipe in Yvette Van Boven's whimsical and lovely Home Baked, which was a welcome distraction during stressful parts of the move. The original recipe didn't come with a photo, I think because (as we discovered) the muffins are slightly homely looking (though still cute, because I think all of my oven children are cute). Also, for the life of me, I cannot figure out a great way to photograph muffins! Maybe Oof felt the same way while photographing Yvette's book. It's like when artists have a really hard time drawing hands.

We'll work on this.

In the meantime, I'm sending you all great big virtual hugs along with these muffins. Let's face it, moving (even when it's exciting) kind of blows, and it feels wonderful to be back here in a familiar happy place. I have missed you all.

Let's hang out more, yes? 😄

berry vanilla yogurt muffins - field + forest
berry vanilla yogurt muffins - field + forest

makes 12-16 muffins (depending on how much fruit you use)


In a small bowl, combine all of the ingredients for the topping. Mix into a coarse crumble with your fingers. Place in the fridge until ready to use.

Preheat the oven to 350˚F, and grease a standard 12-cup muffin tin.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the 2 2/3 cups flour, baking soda, and salt.

Break the eggs into a large bowl and beat with a whisk until foamy (alternately, use a hand mixer). Add the sugar and melted butter and beat it until the mixture has become light and airy. Add the yogurt and lemon zest and mix well to combine. Add the flour all at once and stir gently until just combined, being careful not to over-mix the batter. It's okay if the batter is slightly lumpy; the lumps will bake out in the oven.

Quickly toss the fruit with the remaining tablespoon of flour, then add to the batter bowl. Using a spatula, fold the fruit into the batter. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling each cup 3/4 of the way full. Sprinkle the crumb topping over the top. (If you have more batter than will fit in 12 muffin cups, put the batter in the fridge while the first batch bakes, then remove it at the same time you remove the finished muffins from the oven. Re-grease the muffin tins before refilling.)

Bake for 25 minutes, or until the tops of the muffins spring back when touched (it is hard to use the toothpick method since the muffins have so much wet fruit!). Let them cool on a rack for 5 minutes, then remove them from the cups. Enjoy warm from the oven, or store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days.



 

FOR THE TOPPING:

1/4 cup unrefined cane sugar
3 tablespoons spelt, wheat, or all-purpose flour
1.5 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)

FOR THE MUFFINS:

2 2/3 cups + 1 tablespoon spelt, wheat, or all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
pinch of salt
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2/3-3/4 cup unrefined cane sugar (use 2/3 if using vanilla yogurt, 3/4 if using plain yogurt)
2 tablespoons butter or coconut oil, melted, plus extra for greasing the pan
1 1/2 cups vanilla-flavored whole-milk greek yogurt or other whole milk yogurt
finely grated zest of 1 lemon
2 1/4 cups mixed berries, pitted cherries, and/or chopped stone fruit


rosemary biscuits + blood orange shortcakes

breakfast, desserts, sweet, vegetarian, winterRachel SandersComment

So my best laid plan to get these biscuits + shortcakes to you for Valentine's Day was a bust. I had grand visions of breakfast in bed with coffee and artfully plated shortcakes for my own Sunday celebration, but in reality, I nuked a tortilla and wrapped it around some avocado slices and then went skiing with Richard. Ha! Oh well.

I think sometimes there's a little too much pressure to do something grand for Valentine's Day. And it's not really worth it to make everything perfect and photogenic and complicated if it keeps you from being relaxed and having fun and spending quality time with your significant other/best friend/dog/chickens/self. Plus, I like breakfast-in-bed stuff all of the time, not just on Valentine's Day!

So I'm here to say that I hope you had a lovely and wonderful Sunday holiday morning, no matter what you ended up doing, and offer you a fabulous little breakfast idea for the next time you want to express "hey, I like you!" sentiments to someone important in your life. Especially if that someone is yourself.

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I have made these biscuits so many times that the cookbook containing the recipe falls open to the biscuit page each time I take it out of the bookshelf. They are Heidi Swanson's biscuits, and they are amazing. We mix up the flour proportions and types sometimes, but we're pretty committed to putting yogurt in our biscuits at this point.

Here's the low-down on choosing your yogurt for this recipe: a) tangier is better, in our minds, because it makes a more flavorful biscuit, b) Greek yogurt makes for taller, more layered biscuits, while a more liquid yogurt means flatter, but still very tender biscuits, and c) any (plain) yogurt you have on hand is perfect for this recipe, because it will make for delicious biscuits no matter their height.

I used a fairly liquid, goat's milk yogurt for the biscuits pictured here. You don't have to use goat's milk yogurt (it's just something we keep around most of the time), but I think a thinner biscuit is better for shortcake purposes, since you get a higher ratio of cream and fruit to biscuit.

In case you are wondering, no, I have never tried making these with a non-dairy yogurt. They could be great! They could be awful! Who can say! I'll let you experiment with this.

Makes 10-12 biscuits/shortcakes

You should feel free to experiment with these biscuits to take them further toward sweet or savory. You can brush them with a little cream or milk and sprinkle them with Turbinado sugar to give them a sweet, crunchy top. You can also change the herbs depending on how you plan to serve the biscuits, or omit them altogether.


For the biscuits:

1 1/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more as needed for dusting
3 teaspoons kosher salt (or 1 1/2 teaspoons table salt)
1 tablespoon aluminum-free baking powder
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary (or more or less, depending on how much you like rosemary
1/2 cup unsalted butter, chilled and cut into tiny cubes
1 1/3 cups yogurt (again, Greek for higher, more layered biscuits; more liquid for shorter, tender biscuits)


Preheat the oven to 450˚F and place a rack in the center of the oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

Combine the flours, salt, baking powder, and rosemary in the bowl of a food processor, and pulse 2-3 times to mix. Sprinkle the cubes of butter over the dry ingredients and pulse 15-20 times (or more) until the mixture resembles (in Heidi's words) "tiny pebbles on a sandy beach."

Add the yogurt and pulse a few more times until just incorporated. Avoid over-mixing, as this will toughen the biscuits.

Gather the dough into a ball and turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Gently press the dough together, kneading 2-3 times if necessary, and shape it into an inch-thick square. Cut in half and place one half on top of the other. Flatten with your hands or with a rolling pin into another inch-thick square, cut in half, and stack again. Repeat each step one more time, then press the dough into a 3/4-inch thick rectangle. Cut the dough into 10-12 equally sized biscuits.

Transfer the biscuits to the baking sheet, leaving 1/2-inch of space between each biscuit. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until the bottoms are deeply golden and the biscuits are cooked through.

Scroll down for notes on making/plating the shortcakes.

Serves 2


Split the biscuits and place each bottom on a plate. Spoon the yogurt cream evenly over the two biscuit bottoms. Arrange the blood orange slices over the cream, and drizzle with honey. Pick some rosemary leaves from the springs and tuck in among the orange slices. Angle the biscuit tops over the shortcakes so that much of the fruit and yogurt is visible. Serve immediately and tuck in! 

2 rosemary biscuits
Yogurt cream (enough to serve 2 = 1/4 cup cream whipped with 1/4 cup yogurt and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla)
2-3 blood oranges, peeled, seeded, and sliced
Honey
1-2 rosemary sprigs