I sampled this delicious strawberry-balsamic compote at the farmer’s market a few weeks back and I knew I had to make it. And because I like to bite off more than I can chew and over complicate things, I added it to strawberry shortcake. I made scones for the shortcake part, which usually works out wonderfully. The idea of using honey and basil in the scones got into my head this time and I couldn’t get it out, but I forgot the golden rule of substitutions in baking: keep the proportions of wet and dry ingredients the same. Suffice it to say that you cannot substitute honey for granulated sugar without making any other modifications to a recipe to balance it out. I ended up with messy dough that stuck all over my hands and I had to dump flour into it until I could work it properly. Sooo…. I’m not going to post what I did for the scones. Instead, I will add below a great sounding scone recipe that I based my disaster on, that I’m sure turns out really well if you follow the directions.
Strawberry Balsamic Compote
1/2 lb strawberries, hulled and quartered
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
fresh ground salt and pepper
vanilla bean pod (optional)
1. Separate 8-10 strawberries, slice and leave aside. Cook strawberries and vanilla pod in saucepan until strawberries begin to breakdown, about 10 minutes.
2. Remove vanilla pod. Add sugar, salt and pepper and cook until mixture forms a sauce consistency (about another 10 minutes). Add balsamic vinegar and cook 5 more minutes. Remove from heat and stir in sliced berries.
Adapted from Chef Vanessa Gale via Ottawa Farmer’s Market
1. Don’t do what I did.
2. Follow this recipe for Classic Cream Scones. Add a couple of tablespoons of chopped fresh basil to the batter.
Honey Whipped Cream
1 cup whipping cream
2 tbsp raw wildflower honey
1. In a glass bowl, whip cream until peaks form. Stir in honey.
Serve by topping scones with strawberry balsamic mixture and whipped cream. Garnish with fresh mint (because my flower bed is over run by mint!)