My favorite time of the year is just ahead and I cannot wait to start doing some food shoots to reflect the awesomeness that is summer produce! My neighbors have this beautiful rhubarb plant which they generously offered up to me whenever I want. Rhubarb is one of those fickle foods which can be argued as a fruit given its contextual use in cooking, but is technically considered a vegetable. I finally got around to picking a recipe to use the rhubarb with; strawberry rhubarb drop scones. To give it a try please visit http://www.yankeekitchenninja.com/2012/05/strawberry-rhubarb-drop-scones-recipe.html. I really like this recipe because it is low key. Scones can be a complicated affair, but these are quick and easy for those of you who are like me and have little energy after work to put together a meal that doesn’t come from a box.
It wasn’t quite time for strawberry picking, so I’m sure had I used fresh from the field strawberries these scones would have been even more amazing. Instead, I found some nice organic strawberries that looked plump and flavorful. Part of food photography which I love and think is essential for telling a story are ingredient shots. What would a good recipe be without quality ingredients that make your mouth water and your heart reflect on long standing memories? I wanted to photograph the rhubarb individually since it is such a unique plant. The particular plant that my neighbors have is pretty massive, in fact it is so large that it has sort of mutated into two plants. Some of the leaves are probably about the size of my mini schnauzer, which I think is amazing considering the small st alky base that supports them. I noticed how thick the veins in these leaves were and felt photographing this would shed light on the amount of power and energy that is needed to keep such a plant thriving. While the leaves are interesting this is not part of the plant that is used in cooking. In fact, rhubarb leaves are poisonous. They contain oxalic acid which can be harmful to humans if the correct amount is ingested. Granted you’d have to eat rhubarb leaf salads for days to build up enough of the oxalic acid, it is important to remember to just stay away and eat the stalks.
The recipe (as linked above) was pretty straight forward. I made just a few slight adjustments based on my personal taste. I like rhubarb, but it can be a bit sour if not balanced correctly. The recipe called for two cups mixed of chopped strawberries and rhubarb. I decided to add in an extra cup of strawberries since my particular palate doesn’t handle sour well. For those of you who like a bit of that zing, I suggest following the recipe. I also added a 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla because I absolutely love vanilla in baking. The buttermilk is a wonderful touch to these scones. I couldn’t help but feel like they were a heartier version of a fruit pancake. I would recommend eating them up quickly as I had a few left over in my container that ended up moldy. I wish I would have been a bit more conservative with the size that I dropped the scones out on the tray, as they were quite large and I ended up having to cook them for longer than stated in the recipe to be sure they were done all the way. These scones are wonderful paired with breakfast tea, especially if you have a nice berry tea. You can even put jam and butter on them if you find the rhubarb too sour.