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Scones, Cookies and a Casserole


DEAR SOS: How about the recipe for the currant scones served at the Some Crust Bakery on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles? They're great.


DEAR CHARLES: The recipe is quick and easy enough to put together for a last-minute Valentine tea (serve with cherry or red berry jam). The scones were first introduced at the Some Crust Bakery in Claremont, according to owner Sarah Gerard.


4 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/3 cup sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup butter, sliced

1/2 cup currants

3 eggs

3/4 cup whipping cream

Combine flour, baking powder, sugar and salt in bowl. Cut in butter by hand or in food processor until mixture is even-textured. (Mixture will resemble fine meal as in pie crust.) Mix in currants. Beat eggs with whisk until pale. Whisk in whipping cream. Knead by hand until soft ball is formed.

Roll out on floured board to 1/2-inch thickness, adding only enough flour to keep from sticking. Fold dough into thirds, and roll out again to 1/2-inch. Repeat folding and rolling dough. Roll dough to 3/4-inch thickness. Cut with 3-inch round cutter.

Bake at 350 degrees 15 to 18 minutes or until light golden brown. Makes 12 to 14 (3-inch) scones.

DEAR SOS: I remember being served a delicious casserole that consisted of yams, apples and brown-sugar topping. Can you locate the recipe for me?


DEAR AUDREY: Of course. It's one of our favorite wintertime yam dishes, especially when served with ham, turkey or pork roast.


4 medium (about 1 3/4 pounds) yams

2 medium Golden Delicious apples

1/4 cup butter, cut in thin pats

1/4 cup dark brown sugar, packed

1/2 teaspoon ground mace

Scrub yams under cold running water. Place in medium saucepan and cover with boiling water. Cover and boil until almost tender, about 25 minutes. Cool slightly and remove skins. Cut in 1/2-inch-thick crosswise slices.

Peel and core apples. Cut each in 6 rings.

Layer yams and apples in 1 1/2-quart buttered casserole. Dot with butter and sprinkle with brown sugar and mace. Bake, covered, at 350 degrees until very tender, about 1 hour. Makes 4 to 6 servings.

DEAR SOS: I don't doubt that your Peanut Butter Cup Cookies (Food Section, Jan. 3) are delicious, but would you like the same cookie with half the effort?


DEAR MARY LOU: What a good idea.


1 (40-count) package chocolate-covered peanut butter cups

1 (20-ounce) log refrigerated spoonable sugar cookie dough

Remove foil and paper cups around each candy. Cut cookie dough in 10 equal slices. Cut each slice in quarters. Roll slightly in hands and drop into miniature muffin pans.

Bake at 350 degrees 10 minutes. Immediately push peanut butter cups into center of cookies. Return to oven with heat off 5 minutes, leaving oven door open. Cool in pans. Makes 40 cookies.

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