Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Recipe: Robert Hudyma's Wild Rice, Sundried Blueberry & Cranberry Scones

Over the Easter weekend I was pleased to receive an unexpected visit from Chef Robert Hudyma.  He happened to be in KW and made a point of stopping in to say hello and see the shop.  

Rob and his wife Colleen are the owners of Catered Affare Fine Foods in Toronto.  They gave me my first job (aside from waitressing) in the food industry.  I had recently graduated from the University of Guelph and was seriously contemplating chef school.  Accordingly, I was eager to find out what life was like in an industrial kitchen and so I met with as many chefs and food professionals as possible in order to gain some insight.  Everyone I spoke to told me to work in a commercial kitchen first, before I committed to chef school.  I remember one chef telling me that “baking a pan or two of brownies on the weekend is a VERY different experience than baking 20 or 30 trays for a large function – over and over again throughout your career!”  He was right.

I had heard great things about Catered Affare and arrived unannounced one November afternoon, resume in hand.  After a brief chat, I was offered the job – and an apron – on the spot!  (I think I came back the following morning for my first shift).  My timing was perfect, as November/December are by far the busiest months for most caterers – and no matter how many people you hire, there are never enough hands on deck.

I was relieved to discover that I loved working in a “real” kitchen.  Despite the long hours, I felt energized and was excited to be learning so much every day.  Thanks, Chef Rob, for taking a chance on me!

Rob Hudyma’s Wild Rice, Sundried Blueberry & Cranberry Scones

Rob says “This is one of our all-time favourite recipes.  For sweet versions omit the wild rice, salt and pepper and chives”


§         6 (six) cups all purpose flour
§         3 (three) tablespoons baking powder
§         ½ (one-half) cup dried blueberries
§         ½ (one-half) cup dried cranberries, coarsely chopped
§         ½ (one-half) cup cooked wild rice
§         2 (two) tablespoons chopped chives
§         salt and pepper to taste
§         1 (one) quart of 35% cream (less 6 tablespoons)
§         egg white, as needed
§         superfine fruit sugar, as needed (you can find this at Ayres Nut & Baking Store on Regina St, OR, blitz granulated sugar in a food processor until fine).


1.       Mix dry ingredients making a well in the middle of a stainless mixing bowl.
2.       Add the cream and combine as quickly as possible, not overworking the dough.  Turn out onto a floured surface and roll to one-inch thickness.
3.       Using a two-inch cutter, punch out scones.  Left over dough can be reused.
4.       Glaze with egg white and superfine fruit sugar.
5.       Bake at 350 F for 18 minutes until golden brown and slightly puffed.  Cool on rack.
6.       Serve on their own or make mini scone “sandwiches” with sliced cheddar and smoked bacon or Swiss Emmenthaler and black forest ham.

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