A large part of my self care lately has involved doing more of what brings me joy. It can be something as simple as brewing a little teapot full of my favorite chai, taking a few breaths of fresh air after a long and soaking rain, or going for a walk. Today, despite the weather forecast, I waited for a break in the rain to go for a walk. There’s a bayou and storm water treatment wetland area within a a very short walking distance from my house. I knew it would be rather soggy so I put on my rubber boots and trudged along. I didn’t pass another soul, just me and the sights, sounds, and smells of nature. The air was cool and shockingly pleasant thanks to the rain and clouds we’ve had this week. It’s a welcome change to the humid hell that is August in Houston.
As I walked along, splashing my way through mud, water, and eventually tall grasses and weeds, I began to remember how much joy these walks bring. I spent a lot of time outside during my time as an archaeologist and today, I realized just how much I missed it. That familiar scent of wet, sandy soil and decomposing leaf matter. High stepping over logs, fallen trees, and greenbriers. The frequent run-ins with all manner of fauna. Despite the fact that digging holes wasn’t that exciting most of the time, I was able to enjoy nature.
Just as I was caught up in these thoughts, ruminating on joy and nature, I noticed a duck attempting to quickly cross in front of me to get to the pond. And when I looked closer, her fluffy gaggle of ducklings became clear. Mama duck was going about her day, just trying to get the kids to the pond safely. In that moment, I made a promise with myself to go on walks as often as possible.
Aside from walks, the figs I’ve been getting at the farmers market have been bringing me immense joy. I tend to prefer eating them raw because they’re just that damn good but I’ve been itching to use them in some scones. When I was over at Lauren’s a couple of weeks ago photographing and learning about making shrubs, she also made me some rosemary lemon infused sugar to take home. It didn’t take long to figure out how I wanted to use the beautifully scented sugar. As you can see, it made it’s way into these lovely scones.
These scones are a little different from my base recipe that I used to use at the farmers market because I’ve tried to cut down on the number of flours used. These babies only have 2 different flours making them a little more user friendly, especially if you aren’t a fan of fussy baking recipes. The only trade off is that the texture of these is best the day they are made, and even better warm out of the oven. They don’t have much of a shelf life, but once you taste one I wager they won’t stick around your house too long. The texture of the figs turns nice and jammy in the oven, their intense sweetness perfectly complemented by the hearty buckwheat flour and herbaceous rosemary lemon sugar. If you don’t want to wait to make these until you have some rosemary lemon sugar ready to go, you can use coconut sugar in its place.