April 26, 2014 by Meg G.
We’ve been having a bit of a bird problem. And by a bit of a bird problem, I mean that for the last 11 months, we’ve had some bird tenants in our house.
Our first night in the apartment, we were convinced that there was a large animal (I was sure it was a small bear!) scratching at the floors and tearing apart the attic. Having just put a large number of boxes up there, I found myself doing a mental inventory of our belongings, trying to figure out which of our valuables might be torn to shreds. Heather and her mom were brave enough to scope it out in the light of day and found everything right where we had left it, in one piece. Turns out, no baby bears had migrated to the attic (weird, right?). Instead, we discovered that some birds had moved into the 3rd floor studio apartment a.k.a. the bathroom fan vent.
Let’s just say that our “bird friends” did not make our landlord’s priority list. We survived the late spring baby bird chirping (more like squawking!) and the constant scraping, flapping, and other bird noises that served as our daily alarm. Winter came, they quieted down a bit, and we begrudgingly let it go. But this spring, they came back with a vengeance. Heather finally put her foot down last week and convinced our landlord to evict the birds and replace the vent cover to prevent future roommates. But birds are not quick to abandon a cozy home – they’ve been flapping and scratching at the vent for the last few mornings, trying to gain reentry.
There’s only one antidote for being awoken by birds at 6:40am on a Saturday morning: scones!
Apple Cinnamon Scones – adapted from Jo Cooks
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2/3 cup rolled oats
- 1 Tablespoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted cold butter
- 1 large apple, peeled and diced
- 1/2 cup milk (we used almond)
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 Tablespoons rolled oats
- 2 Tablespoons sugar in the raw
- ground cinnamon to taste (about 1/2 to 1 teaspoon)
- 1 Tablespoon milk (we used almond)
- Preheat the oven to 400F. Line baking sheet with parchment or use nonstick spray.
- In a large bowl, combine the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Then, rub the butter gently into the dry ingredients using your fingertips (or a pastry blender or two knives). It should resemble a coarse meal.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the milk and honey. You can warm it up just slightly in the microwave, if necessary. Stir the apples into the milk & honey and then combine wet ingredients and dry. Combine with a wooden spoon, but do not over mix.
- Turn the dough out onto a clean, floured surface. Knead just a few times, if necessary and then flatten into a disk (about 8-10 inches in diameter and about 1/2 inch thickness). Cut into 8 triangles and transfer to the baking sheet.
- In a small bowl, prepare the topping by combining the oats, sugar, and cinnamon. Add just a splash of milk until the topping comes together. Press the topping into the scones. Alternately, you can brush the scones with milk and then add the dry topping ingredients, pressing slightly.
- Bake the scones for about 16 – 20 minutes. Scones should be golden brown on the outside and still soft on the inside. Watch of the tips of the triangle-shaped scones and the topping, which will cook more quickly. Enjoy!
Scones are pretty much the solution to every Saturday morning hiccup. Just as I was sitting down to share the recipe with you, the doorbell rang. It was our friend, Aaron Regunberg, candidate for State Rep here in District 4. I didn’t realize that it was Aaron until he walked across the street. When I headed out to flag him down, I found this in my mailbox:
(I had mentioned to Aaron that the bus stop at the end of my street had been removed earlier this fall. What a guy!)
Turns out, it’s Aaron’s first day of door-knocking in the ‘hood, but it’s super rainy and cold. Nothing a little homemade scone can’t improve, right Aaron?
Moral of the story: make some scones and share them. But not with the birds.