Many scones I eat taste like baking horror stories. Dry, flavorless, feels like sand-in-your-mouth scones with a dry, over sweetened glaze. Yuck. When I was younger I asked for scones, solely for the purpose of scraping off the glaze and eating it. And here’s the sad thing: even my un-picky little kid self didn’t like the dry scones. That’s BAD news. As I got older, I stopped asking for scones because I could just make glaze and eat it plain. Yeah, I did that. So up until today, it has been years since I ate scones. Then I decided to make them. My mom just returned home from a trip to Scotland and Ireland. Every day when she was there, she had afternoon tea. Tea usually consisted of tea (duh), or coffee, and sweets like small cookies, cakes, or scones. She decided that our family should have tea time, so yesterday we went to the store and bought some tea. I instantly pounced on the opportunity to bake. Since scones are a staple tea-time snack, I decided to take the challenge of making non-horror story scones. I flipped through The Jimtown Store Cookbook and found this delightful recipe that produces moist, perfectly sweet scones with a mellow citrusy tang. The tart dried cherries in it balance out the sweet cinnamon glaze on top. Perfection. Run, eat these, pretend to be British, repeat.
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons cream or milk
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 3 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 Tablespoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter (It should be a little cooler than room temp, but not too cold!)
- 1/2 cups chopped tart sun dried cherries
- 1-3 teaspoons orange zest (depends how orangey you want it)
- 1 cup buttermilk
- First, make the glaze. Wisk the glaze ingredients together in a small bowl. I feel stupid writing this, it’s so simple.
- To make the scones, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Use a pastry blender to cut in the butter until it resembles a crumbly mixture with some butter chunks about the size of peas. Stir in the cherries and orange zest. Add the one cup of buttermilk. If the dough is really dry and crumbly, add 1-2 extra Tablespoons of buttermilk. If the dough sticks to your fingers, add more flour until it is moist and smooth.
- Put the dough on a lightly floured surface. Roll it out into a 9 inch by 6 inch rectangle that is about an inch thick. Spread the glaze evenly over the top. (You may not need all of it). Cut your large rectangle into smaller rectangles, then cut the smaller rectangles in half diagonally. They will (sort of) look like triangles. Chill the scones on a baking sheet covered with parchment for 30 minutes. Pre-heat your oven to 450 degrees F fifteen minutes before you bake your scones.
- Set the chilled scones in the oven and bake for 6 minutes. Without opening the oven, reduce the temperature to 425 and bake for another 8-10 minutes. The scones should be golden on the top and bottom. The second they come out of the oven, grab one and eat it piping hot. (Or not, they taste just as good cooled). Top with butter of jam if you want. I enjoyed mine plain. Either way, you will love them.
Make these today. You won’t regret anything. Unless you eat the whole batch. Then you’ll sit and cry on the couch for a minute before getting up to make more. Baking is vicious.