Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Something about January

There is something about this blustery month (even though today is honestly the first blustery day we've had in weeks...which is unheard of here in OK) that makes me want to curl up with a good book, a cup of hot tea, and a warm scone.

There is something about January that puts me in a scone-making mood.  Not just any favorite scone scone recipes.  I was reading a journal from this time last year and saw an entry about making a new scone.

So here are two new-to-me scone recipes...and I hope they become new-to-you, because they are both delicious! And both are a little bit enjoy them soon!

Peppermint Stick Scones
original recipe from Alice's Tea Cup (This is a must-have cookbook. It's wonderful.)

3 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp kosher salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup crushed Brach's peppermint candies
1 1/4 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup heavy cream

1.  Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

2. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, soda, powder, and salt.  Add the pieces of butter, and with clean hands, work the butter into the dry mixture until thoroughly incorporated...with the consistency of breadcrumbs..  Add 3/4 cup of the crushed peppermints and combine well.

3. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, and pour in the vanilla and buttermilk.  Combine the ingredients until all the dry mixture is wet but do not knead the dough.

4. Turn the mixture onto a floured surface and gather the dough together.  Divide the dough into two sections and shape each into a round disc, about 8 inches wide and and inch or so thick.  Cut each disc into 8-12 wedges, depending on the number and size of scones desired.

5. Place each wedge on a baking sheet lined with parchment.  Brush the tops of each scone with heavy cream and sprinkle with the remaining crushed peppermint.

6. Bake the sones for about 12 minutes, until lightly browned.  Allow to cool on cookie sheet for a few minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.  When you remove the scones from the parchment, the melted peppermint will form strings of sugar, and you will also have some scones with melted peppermint pooled beside them.  Allow the scones to cool completely and then easily break off the candy. (Removing the attached candy when it's still warm will also pull apart the scone.)

My recipe yielded 22-24 scones.  You can make them thicker (as the cookbook suggests) but I find this size to be plenty large!

(I definitely think you can still get away with Peppermint flavored things in January, don't you? The peppermint melts and becomes chewy inside the's just wonderful.)

As for this next scone, I found the recipe months ago on Pinterest.  And I've been waiting for Meyer Lemons to show up in my grocery store. Waiting and waiting. And then, the week after Christmas, they did.  Then I just had to wait for decent looking strawberries...and voila, may I present:

Strawberry Meyer Lemon Scones
original recipe from here (I altered a few instructions and the glaze recipe.)

4 cups flour
4 tsp baking powder
2/3 cup sugar
3/4 tsp salt
zest of three Meyer Lemons
1 cup cold unsalted butter, cut in half-inch pieces
2 large eggs
1/3 cup Meyer Lemon juice (about 3 lemons)
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup fresh strawberries, diced

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1-2 tsp Meyer lemon juice
2-3 tsp milk

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

2. Zest the lemons and combine the sugar and zest in a small bowl.  Using your fingers, rub the sugar and zest together, to release the oils and fragrance of the lemons.

3. Combine the flour, baking powder, sugar & zest, and salt. Add the butter to the dry ingredients, and using your hands, work the butter into the flour mixture until the consistency of fine breadcrumbs.  In a small bowl, whisk the eggs, lemon juice, buttermilk, and vanilla.  Stir the liquids into the dry mixture until the dough is moist, but do not knead.  Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead a few times until the texture is uniform and all dry bits have been incorporated.

4. Press the dough into a large circle that is half an inch thick.  Sprinkle the diced strawberries on top, the roll the circle up into a tube shape.  Fold the tube into thirds. Cut the dough in half.  Press each half (one at a time) into a round disc that is a half-inch thick.  Use a 2-3 inch round cutter (or a drinking glass) to cut scones out of the dough.  Gather unused dough and repeat process. (With the last bit of dough, I simply shaped a round disc.)

5. Place each scone on the parchment and bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden.  Allow scones to cool completely on a wire rack.

6. Meanwhile, stir together the lemon juice, and powdered sugar, adding milk a teaspoon at a time until the glaze reaches a pourable consistency.  Drizzle glaze over the scones when cool.

I found both scone recipes to be best enjoyed within the first 24 hours of baking...the peppermint scones become hard after 2-3 days...and the strawberry lemon ones become soft.  If they last that long, anyway!


ClaireTet said...

They sound delicious - these are the things that are making my One Little Word( health )so jolly difficult!

Shawna said...

yum. oh, i wish we lived closer.


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