Wednesday, April 16, 2008
The Best Scones Ever
(post also published simultaneously at full tummies)
I realize that's a pretty boastful recipe title, but these scones are the best I've ever tasted or made (and I've made a lot of scones over the past 10 years or so and eaten my fair share actually in England/Scotland). In fact, a British lady I knew used to pay me to make these for her because she liked them better than any she could find in the local coffee shops here in the Southeast (U.S.).
The original recipe is from Country Baking, but I've made a few wee changes. I'll include my variations first in each case.
2 1/2 cups flour (white, white whole wheat, or combination--I've done all)
2 t. grated orange peel (~the zest of one medium-sized orange)
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1/2 c. butter
1/2 c. craisins, raisins, or currants
1/2 c. plain yogurt or sour cream
1/3 c. honey
1 egg, slightly beaten
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease baking sheet*; set aside.
2. Combine flour, orange peel, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in large bowl. Cut in butter with pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in craisins/raisins/currants. Combine yogurt/sour cream, honey, and egg in medium bowl until well blended. Stir into flour mixture until soft dough forms. Turn out dough onto lightly floured surface. Knead dough 10 times. Shape dough into 8-inch square. Cut into 4 squares; cut each square diagonally in half, making 8 triangles. Place triangles 1-inch apart on baking sheet.
3. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown and wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean (scones will have risen slightly and will begin to split every so slightly along the sides when done). Remove from baking sheet. Cool on wire rack 10 minutes. Serve warm or cool completely. These also freeze well once cooled. To thaw, simply remove from freezer the night before. You can also underbake them slightly and then freeze (once they've cooled). Once thawed, pop them back in the oven for a minute or two to finish browning and to warm up.
4. Serve with butter, lemon curd, strawberry jam, or...to be really authentic...clotted cream. Mmmm.... These are perfect for breakfast or tea time.
*I highly recommend a stoneware baking sheet (which does not need to be greased); it has made a big difference for me with these scones. They rise higher and seem to cook better all the way around on a stone sheet.