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I finally did it guys: I made scones. This might not seem like a huge thing for you seasoned bakers out there, but for a Florida girl, trying to keep tiny pieces of butter cold in the middle of summer is not the easiest thing. Especially when you have to work the dough, however briefly, with your hands. I saw this recipe from Smitten Kitchen a couple of weeks ago, but I had been under the weather, and it seemed like a perfectly good excuse to avoid baking a bit longer. Please excuse the horrible photos; I took these at 7am on Sunday right after I finished baking, and I wasn’t wearing glasses or contacts. In my defense, I thought they looked pretty okay at the time.
1 cup (125 grams) all-purpose flour
1 cup (120 grams) whole wheat flour
Zest of 1 lemon, finely grated
3 tablespoons raw (turbinado) or light brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon coarse or kosher salt
5 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small bits
1 cup fresh blueberries
2/3 cup (150 ml) milk, whole is best here
1 large egg, beaten
1 tablespoon raw (tubinado) or other coarse sugar for finishing
Heat oven to 400°F (205°C). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, combine flours, zest, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add cold butter and work into the flour mixture until the biggest pieces are the size of small peas with either your fingertips or a pastry blender. Stir in blueberries, then milk, mixing only until large clumps form. Use your hands to reach inside the bowl and gently (so gently) knead the mixture into one mass. The more you knead, the wetter the dough will get as the blueberries break up, so work quickly and knead only a few times, if you can get away with it.
Transfer dough to a well-floured counter and pat into a roughly 1-inch tall disc. Cut into 8 to 10 wedges, do not fret if the blueberries are now making a mess of the dough; it will all work out in the oven. Transfer wedges to prepared baking sheet, spacing them apart. Brush the tops of each with egg, then sprinkle with coarse sugar.
Bake for 15 to 17 minutes, until scones are golden brown on top. Serve warm. I find most scones to be best the first day, but these were not bad at all on day two, gently rewarmed in the oven before eating.
If freezing: I like to freeze scones unbaked and usually hold any egg wash until I’m ready to bake them. Simply spread the wedges on a baking sheet and chill until frozen solid and will no longer stick to each other, and pack tightly into a freezer bag. You can bake them right from the freezer; you’ll only need 2 to 4 minutes extra baking time.
*This is the point where I started celebrating, 1-because they were done & 2-because I almost dropped them taking them out of the oven but managed to right the baking sheet at the last moment.
- I was so pleased that these worked out. They were my first attempt at scones, and there my have been a bit of fist pumping and dancing around the kitchen as they came out of the oven a perfect golden brown.
- I had to add an additional 1/3 cup of milk (bringing the recipe total to 1 cup) before my dough would come together. There was an initial freak out when the dough wouldn’t come together, but I added the extra milk, and it looked just like the pictures. This did, however, add another 5 minutes to the bake time.
- Having read the full post, I know why the author chose to go half and half with regular all purpose and whole wheat flour, but the next time, I think I am going to do 100% all purpose. It’s just a texture/flavor preference for me. That being said I immensely enjoyed my scone, and by the end of the day, Andy had eaten the other 7.
- You HAVE to add the zest, it makes the flavor so much more bright and complex. Andy even managed a garbled, “the lemon really makes it” around his ginormous second bite of scone. He’s so cute when he is happy.