May 2023

Orange Ginger Scones

May 30: National Scone Day

Whenever there is an extended national holiday, like Memorial Day weekend, Islander likes to bake some scones on a Friday evening so they would be ready for a “late-awake” breakfast on Saturday and Sunday. We just reheat them and enjoy with a cup of coffee or tea. 

We have made many scones before but always want to try different recipes. For this one, we had a little bit of orange juice leftover and decided to use them in orange ginger scones. The citrusy glaze enhances the orange flavor and complements the gingery bits. 

For National Scone Day, try making one of the many scone recipes listed under our Theme Menus, especially orange ginger scones. 


(Adapted from TeaTime Magazine)

For the orange ginger scones

  • 1 ½ cups self-rising flour
  • ¼ cup sugar, granulated white
  • ¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted butter, cold or frozen
  • ¼ cup crystallized ginger, chopped finely
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 teaspoon orange extract

For the glaze

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons orange juice


In a mixing bowl, combine the flour and sugar. Grate the cold/frozen butter into the mixture and blend until it resembles coarse crumbs.

Toss in the crystallized ginger and orange zest. In a small bowl or cup, mix the whipping cream with orange extract. Add to the flour mixture to form a dough. 

Form dough into a ball and flatten to ½ inch thick. Cut into wedges. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper a few inches apart from each other.

Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees F for 18-20 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool while making the glaze. In a small bowl or cup, combine the powder sugar and orange juice, adding a little at a time until the glaze reaches the desired consistency. Mix until smooth. Drizzle liberally over the scones. Serve warm.


  • Swap lemon for the orange zest and juice in this scone recipe.
  • If self-rising flour is not available, make it by combining 1 cup flour, 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder and ½ teaspoon salt (measurement is for one cup).
  • Instead of wedge scones, other shapes such as circles/rounds or squares can be made using cutters.

Coronation Aubergine (Eggplant)

May 6, 2023: Coronation Day of King Charles III of England

What an historic moment for us to witness the coronation of the new King of England, Charles III. We were not born yet when the late Elizabeth II was crowned Queen, but we saw video archives of the grand event. While we watched the spectacle on TV and sipped on some English breakfast and Earl/Lady Grey teas, we nibbled on some royal recipes, such as QE2’s coronation chicken, scones and chocolate biscuit cake.

But before KCIII’s big day, we tried a royal recipe from the official coronation website. Coronation aubergine (eggplant) was specifically chosen to commemorate the event for King Charles III. As a connection to the past, it has chutney and curry in the dressing like in the original coronation chicken recipe. As a reflection of the present with more cultural inclusivity, this eggplant recipe was created by Nadiya Hussain, a renowned British-Bangladeshi chef. 

Make a meal fit for a modern monarch and include coronation aubergine in a majestic menu!


(Adapted from the Official Website of the Coronation of His Majesty The King and Her Majesty The Queen Consort)

For the eggplant marinade

  • 2 large eggplants
  • ¾ – 1 cup olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small onion, grated with juices
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt

For the coronation dressing

  • 1 container (7 ounces) plain yogurt
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons mango chutney
  • 2 tablespoons milk (animal or nut)

For the garnish

  • Fried onions (we used crispy salad toppers)
  • Raisins
  • Cilantro leaves, chopped fresh


Wash and dry the eggplants. Slice lengthwise no more than ½ inch thick. Set aside. In a mixing bowl, combine the olive oil with the minced garlic, grated onions with juices, paprika and salt. Mix well. Brush the oil mixture on both sides of the sliced eggplants.

Pan fry on a griddle or grill them for 2 minutes per side. Place on a platter. Keep warm. Meanwhile, make the dressing by combining in a large bowl the yogurt, curry powder and salt. Stir in the minced garlic and mango chutney (see Notes). 

Thin with milk (may puree until it is a desired consistency). Spread or drizzle the dressing over the warm eggplants. Garnish with fried onions, raisins and cilantro. Serve immediately.


  • Highlander’s late Dad was born in Upminster near London. He and his family fled England to Canada during World War II. Like many immigrants, Dad retained his culture and cuisine in a new country and passed down some traditions, like Sunday roast beef dinners on special occasions. Highlander cooked this for Islander’s parents, substituting the usual veggie sides with coronation aubergine.
  • Thanks to Islander’s Daddy who sliced and grilled the eggplants.
  • If the mango chutney is too chunky, mince the fruit. If the dressing is too thick, puree in blender. We used only the jelly part and not the fruit in the sauce.
  • According to the royal website, “[t]he coronation emblem is intended for use by charities, companies and individuals for celebrations to mark His Majesty The King’s coronation in 2023.” As individuals blogging about and celebrating the coronation, we are within rights to feature it in our final food photo.
  • Check out our new Royal Recipes section under the Theme Menus tab to mark this coronation event.

Azarbaychan Salati

(Azerbaijan Salad)

May: National Salad Month

As warmer weather approaches in our side of the world (southwest USA), we like to cool off with a side salad comprising cucumbers and tomatoes. So many combinations of a cucumber-tomato salad exist in almost every country. In Azerbaijan, red bell pepper and green onions are included, and an olive-lemon dressing gives this salad some bright, citrusy undertones. Try Azarbaychan salati for a simple Eurasian mix during National Salad Month.

(Adapted from National Public Radio)


  • 1 cucumber, peeled and chopped
  • 3 large tomatoes, diced (we used roma)
  • 1 large red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 bunch of green onions/scallions, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Chop the cucumbers, dice the tomatoes and red bell pepper and chop the green onions/scallions. Place in a large mixing bowl.

In a measuring cup, combine the olive oil with the lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Pour over the cucumbers, tomatoes, bell pepper and onions. Mix well. Serve chilled.


  • Search our blog for other salad recipes for National Salad Month.

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