Warning: long life update ahead lol. If you’re not interested in the specifics of my life, feel free to skip to the end for the recipe lol If you follow me on social media then you may have already seen my life update. But just in case you missed that post, I recently quit my job. I had been working at a local bread bakery for the past 4 years. And then 2 weeks ago I quit my job. This was definitely not something I had planned on doing that day. It’s not like I woke up and thought “I think I’ll quit my job today”. But I will admit it had kind of been in the back of my mind for a little while. It honestly was not an easy decision. I loved my job. I felt like I fit in there really well and I felt like my coworkers were my second family. That bread bakery was like my second home.
But over the last few months things…changed. Without getting into too many specifics that job just became a burden. And at the time I didn’t even realize how much it was affecting me until I quit. I was just going home irritated almost daily, I was constantly exhausted and fatigued, I had no energy to workout, and even my baking projects at home (which were normally my way of de-stressing) became a burden. I thought I was just burnt out and that once I went on my yearly vacation to my parents that I would come back refreshed. Nope. I came back and within a matter of days I felt exactly how I had been feeling before I had gone on my vacation.
So one fateful Thursday I went into work, ended up being horribly treated, and that’s when I decided enough was enough. I wasn’t going to put up with it anymore. I quit that day. Didn’t even give 2 weeks notice which thankfully my boss was ok with. I think he could tell I was on the verge of losing it. Needless to say I was a little worried though because it’s not like I had another job lined up. Like I said, this wasn’t planned. So that same day I applied for a job at another bakery. This bakery actually was a place I had been wanting to work at for years but never had the courage to actually apply to. I ended up getting the job and I have to say, I love it. It’s only been 3 days but I have learned so much already. I’ve had the opportunity to make things I’ve always wanted to make but was always too intimidated to try at home. Here’s a sneak peek at a few of the things I’ve been able to do at this bakery:
Made my first chiffon cake which is basically a light and airy cake due to the whipped egg whites in the batter (it’s so FLUFFY). It’s other distinguishing feature is the fat that it’s made with (vegetable oil) as opposed to a solid fat like butter or shortening.
Chiffon cakes baked off
Now this next project was the exact moment I fell in love with my new job. I had the pleasure of icing these cookies to make them look like apples as decoration for a caramel apple cake. I felt so in my element. I could have literally just decorated those cookies all day long.
And then today’s fun project: apple compote! My boss gave me free reign and her instructions were basically “just make it taste good”. I didn’t even follow a recipe. Just threw together some apples, cinnamon sugar, and butter and cooked until the apples were tender. I ended up also adding in caramel so it turned into a caramel apple compote.
And one of my other project for the day: creme brulee! I have never made creme brulee before and I admit it always intimidated me. In the end it actually wasn’t as horrible as I had imagined it to be. You just have to make sure to actually follow the recipe (something I have a hard time doing at home lol). Here it is chilling out right after I finished making it. It then goes into the fridge to hang out overnight and then it will be baked into mini creme brulee cups tomorrow.
Just within the last 3 days I’ve been able to scratch off about 5 culinary techniques I’ve had on my bucket list. And since starting that job, I’ve been so much happier, so much more energetic, and actually inspired to work on my own baking projects at home again. Hence today’s baking project!
This recipe combines 3 of my fave things at the moment: scones, cranberries, and cream cheese. I was trying to figure out a way to incorporate all those flavors together when it finally hit me. Scone strudel!
This makes an excellent breakfast! It’s a great combination of sweet and tart thanks to the cranberries. For an extra pop of flavor you could also blend some orange zest into your scone dough. I didn’t do it this time around but I will definitely be doing that next time. Especially since I already know for a fact that it works well in these scones as I already tried it a few weekends ago:
Cranberry cream cheese scone strudel
⁃ 1/2 cup @kodiakcakes buttermilk pancake mix
⁃ 1 cup whole wheat flour
⁃ 2 tsp baking powder
⁃ 2 tbsp butter
⁃ 5oz plain Greek yogurt
⁃ 3 tbsp honey
Cream cheese filling
⁃ 3 oz Greek yogurt cream cheese spread or 3oz regular cream cheese (if you use the latter make sure to soften it first)
⁃ 1 tbsp brown sugar
⁃ 1 egg yolk
Cranberry filling (make this first)
⁃ 3/4 cup frozen cranberries
⁃ 2 tbsp cornstarch
⁃ Splash lemon juice
⁃ 1/4 cup Water, more as needed
⁃ 2 tbsp brown sugar
Prepare cranberry filling first so it can cool down by the time you need it. In a small pot over medium heat, stir cranberries with cornstarch and brown sugar until coated. Add about 1/4 cup water and splash of lemon juice. Stir for a few minutes until mixture starts to thicken. If mixture thickens too quickly before the cranberries have a chance to soften up you can always stir in some more water to thin it out a bit. Continue to cook until cranberries are soft and mixture is a thick jam like consistency. Once it has thickened, remove from heat and let cool completely. It will also thicken as it sits out.
For the cream cheese filling, whip cream cheese with sugar and egg then set in fridge until ready to use.
For the scone base, in a food processor blend flour with kodiak cakes mix and baking powder. Cut in butter just until it’s incorporated into the flour mixture. Add the yogurt and honey and blend until a dough forms. If mixture is too wet or hard to handle (sticky), add a little more flour until it is manageable. You will be rolling it out in the next step so it needs to be easy to handle. For this next part I found it was easiest to lay out a piece of aluminum foil and sprinkle some flour on top. I then rolled out my scone dough into a large rectangle then (carefully) flopped it onto my sprayed baking sheet. Next, use a sharp knife to cut an equal amount of strips of dough on both sides of the rectangle. You can place your other hand in the middle of the dough to use as a guide so you don’t cut too deep and end up not having enough room for your filling. Spoon the cream cheese mixture in the center portion of the dough then top with the cranberry filling. Criss-cross the strips of cut dough over top the filling.
Make sure there aren’t too many overlapping strips otherwise the dough strips underneath may not bake properly. Bake in a preheated 425 degree f oven for about 12 minutes. Brush with milk then continue baking for another 3-5 minutes. Watch towards the end to ensure it doesn’t burn. Let cool then cut into slices and enjoy.