Cream scones

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This winter I delved into the world of scones.  I found a recipe from America’s Test Kitchen for cream scones with currants.  I decided to switch it up and replace currants with chopped dried cranberries and apricots.  Now usually America’s Test Kitchen’s recipes come out exceptionally well because they have been perfected before being published.  However, these scones didn’t rise hardly at all.  Is this something I did?  Or the recipe?  I also over-baked them–whoops–because I was distracted by one of my all-time favorite movies, Notting Hill.  They weren’t quite sweet enough.  My mom actually would love them for this.  If I were to make them again I would cut them into wedges instead of rolling the dough out and cutting them into circles.  I would also sprinkle the tops with sugar before baking.

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I know I probably have not convinced you to make these scones thus far, but there is something truly superb about them: The dough is to die for.  The scones themselves do have a nice crusty outside and buttery taste, but the dough is light and delicately flavorful.  Maybe I am just a dough fiend and this is weird, but I found myself standing in my kitchen eating away at the pile of dough I had made, watching one of the greatest love stories ever (Notting Hill).  I then realized that the whole point is to actually bake them and refrained from picking away the the whole heap.  The dough doesn’t have eggs, which makes it even more enjoyable because I didn’t worry about salmonella–who am I kidding, the threat of salmonella has never stopped me.

THEN when I finished cutting the circles out of the rolled out dough I decided to just eat all of the remaining scraps instead of rolling it back out and cutting more scones.  YUM.

Makes 8-10 circles

  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flours
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 3 tablespoons sugar (plus more for sprinkling on the tops)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into cubes
  • 1/2 cup currants (I used dried cranberries and dried apricots chopped into smaller pieces)
  • 1 cup heavy cream

Preaheat oven to 425 degrees and position a rack in the middle of the oven.

Place all of the dry ingredients into a food processor and pulse a few times to mix.  Then add the butter and pulse until the mixture is crumbly and the butter is in small pieces (roughly 12 pulses).  Add currants and pulse one more time.  (If you do not have a food processor, whisk the dry ingredients and then cut the butter into it with knives, a pastry blender or your fingers.)  Transfer this to a large bowl.

Add the cream and mix with a wooden spoon or spatula for about 30 seconds.  (Do not overmix, this may be why mine didn’t rise.)

Transfer dough to a floured surface and knead into a ball for 5 to 10 seconds.  Form dough into an 8-inch disc and then cut into 8 wedges.  (This is what I would recommend.)

Bake the scones on an ungreased baking sheet for about 15 minutes.  (Check at 10 minutes.)

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