Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Snarky Sisters and Stolen Scones

Me and Deb at the 2011 International Christian Retailers Show
Atlanta, GA 
I love my writing critique partner, Deb Raney, and cannot imagine writing a book without her. She's a jewel in every way.

She tells me the truth no matter what. She points out what I'm doing right, along with what I'm doing wrong. She writes snarky little comments in her critique that can talk me back inside off a ledge faster than a Hostess Cream-filled Cupcake. 

After nearly ten years of working together (which is just beyond belief to me), we've developed a frank and honest rapport that I treasure and that makes me a far better writer than I would be on my own.

Plus, she bakes rockin' great scones! View Exhibit A:

Deb Raney's Craisin Pecan Scones
(Apologies to all my GF friends out there, but hey...sometimes only a scone will do)
I know she wouldn't mind me sharing her recipe because we're just the very best of friends. That, and she posted it on her Facebook Page yesterday. I don't want to start a vicious rumor but…I think Deb stole the recipe from Janet Benrey. Just sayin'…

Buttermilk Scones

               All purpose flour – 2 ¼ cups
               Salt – ½ teaspoon
               Baking powder – 1½  teaspoons
               Baking Soda – ½ teaspoon
               Sugar – ¼ cup
               Craisins – 1 cup
               Butter – ½ cup (1 stick) cut in cubes
               Buttermilk – 1 cup (or sour milk or half-and-half)
               1 egg – beaten well

Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar. “Cut” the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles coarsely ground meal.
Add the raisins and buttermilk. Stir quickly with a fork until the dough is soft and slightly sticky.
Dust your hands with flour and form the dough into a ball on a floured board. Knead gently about ten times. Flatten the dough into a 1″ thick sheet.
Cut 2-inch circles of dough with a cookie cutter or a small drinking glass. (Or drop 2-inch blobs on cookie sheet and flatten with the heel of your hand.) “Paint” the circles of dough with the beaten egg, then bake for 12-15 minutes in a preheated 425°F oven. The scones are done when they have a light golden color.
Scones are best served warm, with Devonshire cream (available in many supermarkets) and preserves (usually strawberry or raspberry).

Recipe adapted from Janet Benrey's Hunnechurch’s Buttermilk & Raisin Scones recipe.

And last but not least…

Deb's latest release, After All, is a fabulous story that's receiving rave reviews. Here's a peek:

Eighteen months after the tragic Grove Street Fire took the life of her husband and four other heroic firefighters, Susan Marlowe thinks she's finally beginning to heal. But then she discovers that David carried a secret to his grave-a secret that changes everything she thought about their marriage. For the sake of their sons, can Susan forgive the unforgivable?

Andrea Morley lost her closest friend in the fire. But she has no right to mourn him. Instead, she must forever grieve in silence-for someone else's husband. Peter Brennan carries the weight of the world on his shoulders. As Hanover Falls fire chief, he was responsible for the brave firefighters who lost their lives that awful November night. Can he ever shake the feeling that he could have somehow prevented the tragedy? And now it seems he might find comfort in the arms of the woman he least expected.

What would life be like without our sisters? I'm so grateful for the sisterhood we share here (and waving to you brave brothers out there too). People who speak the truth into our lives and love us even when knowing our uglies. It makes all the difference as we travel this earthly road together.

Think of one of your closest friends. Can you think of ONE WORD that would describe them? That makes them such a treasure to you?

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