If only I had tried this scone recipe years ago…Before I tried other recipes. Before I tried package recipes. None of them compare to this one. This one rivals the perfect scones we had at the inn we stayed in during our recent trip to Maine; the scones I regretted not getting the recipe for before we left. But now I have my own perfect recipe. The recipe that makes flakey and butter scones, not rocks. Scones that are closer to soft and savory biscuits than rocks. You’re probably thinking, I’ll take any recipe that doesn’t produce scones that are like rocks. But not every recipe will turn out like this one. I promise.
So to adapt the recipe for our preferences, I only had to swap out the cranberries for blueberries (I used fresh). I did double the amount of orange zest based on the Musings comments but honestly, I could have used more zest. They needed a wee bit more zip. Other than that, they were perfect and as a testament to these scones, my dad ate 3 of them during an already large Father’s Day breakfast last weekend.
Thanks to Em of The Repressed Pastry Chef for choosing this recipe as her BRC Recipe this month!!
Are you wondering if you can freeze scones? Why yes, yes you can. They will actually puff up better and are flakier when baking them from the freezer because the butter is nice and cold. Simply roll out the dough, cut the scones into desired shape(s) and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Freeze the unbaked scones until hard then transfer them to a ziptop bag. When you’re ready to bake, place the frozen scones on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and bake at 400 degrees F for 22-25 minutes or until nicely browned on top – do not thaw the scones before baking them. Frozen scones will keep well for a few months.
Cranberry Orange Scones
source: Ina Garten, Barefoot Contessa at Home, page 214
- 4 cups plus 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup sugar, plus additional for sprinkling
- 2 tablespoons baking powder
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
- 3/4 pound cold unsalted butter, diced
- 4 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup cold heavy cream
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- 1 egg beaten with 2 tablespoons water or milk, for egg wash
- 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, plus 2 tablespoons
- 4 teaspoons freshly squeezed orange juice
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix 4 cups of flour, 1/4 cup sugar, the baking powder, salt and orange zest. Add the cold butter and mix at the lowest speed until the butter is the size of peas. Combine the eggs and heavy cream and, with the mixer on low speed, slowly pour into the flour and butter mixture. Mix until just blended. The dough will look lumpy! Combine the dried cranberries and 1/4 cup of flour, add to the dough, and mix on low speed until blended.
- Dump the dough onto a well-floured surface and knead it into a ball. Flour your hands and a rolling pin and roll the dough 3/4-inch thick. You should see small bits of butter in the dough. Keep moving the dough on the floured board so it doesn’t stick. Flour a 3-inch round plain or fluted cutter and cut circles of dough. Place the scones on a baking pan lined with parchment paper. Collect the scraps neatly, roll them out, and cut more circles.
- Brush the tops of the scones with egg wash, sprinkle with sugar, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the tops are browned and the insides are fully baked. The scones will be firm to the touch. Allow the scones to cool for 15 minutes and then whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and orange juice, and drizzle over the scones.