In case you haven’t heard, its been a pretty crazy winter for the Northeast (and a little bit for Texas too). I will admit that I am a little jealous hearing about feet of snow and multiple snow days when Chicago has only got a little 4-6 inch bursts in the city (the suburbs could be an entirely different story). But the one thing we all have in common is winter citrus.
The sight of a big fruit bowl piled with lots of little clementines and a big juicy navel oranges is enough to get anyone through the dismal gray days of winter. However, the fact that the sun in setting at 5:30PM rather than 4 makes winter exponentially more bearable.
But I’m here to tell you about these scones. I woke up on Sunday morning wanting something a little different with my coffee. I remembered that I had a cup of cream leftover from an earlier weeknight recipe (go laugh at the early blog pictures) and saw my pile of oranges. I remembered a scone recipe that I had made around this time last year but never actually told you about.
I personally can’t think of a breakfast pastry that I would rather have over a really good scone, however, often times store bought scones are a huge letdown. But homemade scones are also one of the easiest things you can make. Mix all your dry ingredients in a big bowl, all your wet ingredients in a small bowl. Slowly pour the wet into the dry and mix them up until they are barely combined. Dump the contents onto a floured surface, pat the dough down to a disk and slice into wedges or use cookie cutters for shapes (maybe some Valentine’s Day hearts perhaps?). If you are only making some for one or two, freeze the shaped dough on a covered cookie sheet, and once frozen, store in a ziploc to bake off whenever the good scone craving hits you (just add a few minutes to the baking time).
Pretty simple right? Give them a try this weekend if you want to treat yourself, or your Valentine, to a perfect coffee and scone lazy weekend morning.
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
zest of 1 orange
1/2 cup dried cherries, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup honey
1 cup heavy cream
1 package of “sugar in the raw” or any coarse sugar (somewhat optional)
Preheat the oven to 425F. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Toss in the orange zest and dried cherries and stir until well combined.
In a large liquid measuring cup, whisk together 1/4 cup of honey and 1 cup of heavy cream. Slowly, pour this mixture into the bowl with the dry ingredients, and lightly stir with a fork until the mixture comes together in moist clumps but don’t overmix. Bring the dough together in the bowl by gathering the dough in the bowl and kneading it against the side of the bowl a few times to gather any loose crumbs.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and pat into a 1-inch thick disk. You can either cut it into wedges, or use a 2-inch cookie cutter to cut out a shape. (Hearts or stars work well). Whichever way you do it, place the cut scones on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a Silpat. If you want to save some scones for another morning put the baking sheet in the freezer until the scones are frozen, then store them in a ziptop bag. Bake directly from the freezer on a lined baking sheet.
When ready to bake, brush the tops of the scones with a little cream (or milk if you are out) and sprinkle with coarse sugar. Bake for 15 minutes (17 minutes if frozen), until golden brown and puffed.
Makes 8 scones. Enjoy with a big mug of french press coffee, preferably Intelligentsia.