This recipe is courtesy of one of my favorite recipebooks organized by my Mom, at Willamette University. I have the great fortune of having a mother who is a wonderful cook, and who has also accomplished the task of creating a community cookbook with her co-workers at Willamette University titled Culinary Delights and Bearcat Bites. What this really means is that I have a nice organized collection of several of my favorite Mom recipes. The simple pleasure of having my favorite family recipes at my finger tips is something I wish for everyone to have!
This last week I’ve been enjoying making up scones, a treat I don’t have very often throughout the year. Scones are very similar to biscuits: basically flour with shortening or butter and a little added sugar… and eminently mutable with flavor additives.
Favorite Scone Flavoring Ideas
- Toasted Almond: add a touch of vanilla and almond flavoring to the wet ingredients and a handful of toasted almond slivers at the end.
- Orange Cranberry Hazlenut: to the wet ingredients add a good Tbs of orange zest and soak dried cranberries in orange juice (allowing the cranberries to plump up) adding at the end with toasted hazlenuts.
- Lemon Poppyseed: add lemon zest to the liquid addition and a good sprinkle of poppyseeds at the end.
- Ginger Apricot: cut up several pieces of candied ginger and dried apricots, add at the end. An alternative is to steep the cut up ginger and apricots in the cream before making the recipe. Cool the cream, and add as usual in the liquid step with the ginger bits still in the cream.
- Toasted Hazlenut with Chocolate: add chopped up chocolate and toasted hazlenuts in the end.
- Walnut Fig: steep chopped up dried figs in the cream. Cool the cream, and add as usual in the liquid step with the fig bits still in the cream. Add tosted walnuts at the end.
- Cherry Almond: steep dried cherries in cream as outlined above and add toasted almond slices at the end.
Tea Time Scones
This recipe makes 8 hand sized scones. My Mom recommends doubling the recipe to allow more flavor varieties.
Preheat oven to 400F.
Dry step: in a food processor, or mixing by hand, combine all of the dry ingredients and throughly mix:
- 2 cups of flour
- 2 Tbs sugar*
- 3 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp fine salt
Solid step: with the processor running, add 4 Tbs of cold, (even frozen works) butter or shortening cut into bits. Pulse or mix briefly (5 seconds with the food processor) allowing the butter to integrate and get coated by the dry ingredients.
Liquid step: mix together in a small bowl
- 1/3 cup of heavy cream**
- 2 eggs, beaten***
- any liquid flavorings (extracts, brandy…)
with the food processor running, slowly drizzle the combined liquids into the butter-flour mixture just until all is combined.
Solid flavor additions: if adding any nuts, or solid little flavor bits, cut them up into smaller pieces and add them now.
Turn this mixture out onto a clean surface and press together to make it a unified mass. Shape into a log, 1 inch thick and cut in half lengthwise. Cut each of those halves in half, forming four small rectangles. Cut each of these four small rectangles on the diagonal forming 8 triangle shapes.
Place the raw scones on a baking sheet, and brush with lightly beaten egg whites, and sprinkle with sugar and any dry flavor additives used in the scones (this helps identify your scone flavors).
Bake at 400F for approximately 15 minutes.
* I often like to substitute maple syrup for the 2Tbs sugar. If this is the case, add the maple syrup with your liquid additions, and omit the dry sugar step.
** Buttermilk works well as a variation.
***I don’t usually keep eggs in my household. Instead of whole eggs, I have successfully made this recipe using powdered egg whites. If using powdered egg whites in this recipe instead of whole eggs, measure out the equivalent of two egg whites (this will be specified on your container) and add this in the first step of combining the dry ingredients. Add an extra Tbs or so of liquid (cream or orange juice) as well.
Powdered egg whites can be found in the baking section of your grocery store in a small tub. They don’t require refrigeration, so they make a great pantry item.