fBlueberry Scones

I have a strategy when it comes to choosing recipes from my to-make list.  In the summer months, said strategy is mainly focused around what fruits or vegetables are in season.  As you may well know, the New England growing season isn’t a long one, and for some fruits, we wait sometimes upwards of 2 months for arrival at the farm stands.  Luckily, blueberries arrive fairly early on in the NE growing season and they peak in July.  It’s really no wonder why they show up in so many 4th of July desserts — aside from the obvious use of their blue color, of course.  Our plan this year is to pick a hot July morning next month to do some pickin’ and it’s quite possible that I end up with an army of blueberries as I did with strawberries a few years back.  Next year, our plan is to plant blueberry bushes and I can’t tell you how excited I already am about this!

Before we hit the fields, I’ll satisfy my blueberry cravings with these scones.  Dare I say they are the best scones I’ve ever eaten?  I realize that’s kind of a big thing to say but I won’t lie to you, you know that.  These are the melt-in-your-mouth kind of scones you dream of eating.  The kind of scones most recipes only promise to give you.  These are the real deal.  Flaky, tender, buttery, and not a bit guilt-free.  These are my kind of scones.  And to sweeten the deal a little further, since blueberries really are available year-round, there should be nothing holding you back from baking up a batch on a cold wintery morning as opposed to a hot July morning when you have a house chock full of visitors…like say, this weekend?  I’d venture to say that if you threw in a few strawberries to this recipe, you would also have quite the patriotic breakfast on your hands.  I certainly wouldn’t argue with a breakfast like this one!

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Blueberry Scones
source: Entertaining from Cook’s Illustrated, Spring 2009, via Annie’s Eats

8 tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter, frozen whole
1½ cups (7½ oz.) fresh blueberries
½ cup whole milk
½ cup sour cream
2 cups (10 oz.) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the work surface
½ cup sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
2 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
2 tbsp. unsalted butter, meltedAdjust an oven rack to middle position and preheat to 425˚ F.  Grate the frozen butter on the holes of a large box grater or use the grating attachment for the food processor (no messy hands!).  Place the blueberries in the freezer until needed.Whisk together the milk and sour cream in a medium bowl; refrigerate until needed.  Combine the flour, ½ cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and lemon zest in a medium mixing bowl.  Whisk to combine.  Add the grated butter to the flour mixture and toss with fingers until thoroughly coated.

Add the milk mixture to the dry ingredients and fold with a spatula just until combined.  Transfer the dough to a generously floured work surface.  Dust the top of the dough with flour, and knead with well floured hands, 6-8 times, just until the dough holds together in a ragged ball.  Add small amounts of flour as needed to prevent sticking.

Roll the dough into a 12-inch square.  Fold the dough into thirds like a business letter (a dough scraper really helps with these steps).  Fold the short ends of the dough into the center in thirds, to form an approximate 4-inch square.  Transfer the dough to a plate lightly dusted with flour and chill in the freezer for 5 minutes.

Return the dough to the floured work surface and roll into an approximately 12-inch square again.  Sprinkle the blueberries evenly over the surface of the dough, and gently press down so that they are slightly embedded in the dough surface.  Using a dough scraper, roll the dough up to form a tight log.  Lay the log seam side down and press the the log into a 12 by 4-inch rectangle.  Using a sharp, floured knife, cut the rectangle crosswise into 4 equal rectangles.  Cut each rectangle diagonally to form 2 triangles.  Transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet.

Brush the tops of the scones with melted butter and sprinkle lightly with sugar.  (If freezing ahead of time, flash freeze on the baking sheet for 20 minutes, then wrap individually and store in a freezer bag until needed.)  Bake until the tops and bottoms are golden brown, 18-25 minutes.  Transfer to a wire rack and let cool at least 10 minutes before serving.

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Blueberry Scones

  • Prep Time: 25min
  • Cook Time: 18-25min
  • Yield: 8 large scones

Ingredients

8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, frozen whole
1½ cups (7½ oz.) fresh blueberries
½ cup whole milk
½ cup sour cream
2 cups (10 oz.) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the work surface
½ cup sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
2 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

Instructions

  • 01

    Adjust an oven rack to middle position and preheat to 425˚ F.  Grate the frozen butter on the holes of a large box grater or use the grating attachment for the food processor (no messy hands!).  Place the blueberries in the freezer until needed.Whisk together the milk and sour cream in a medium bowl; refrigerate until needed.  Combine the flour, ½ cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and lemon zest in a medium mixing bowl.  Whisk to combine.  Add the grated butter to the flour mixture and toss with fingers until thoroughly coated.

  • 02

    Add the milk mixture to the dry ingredients and fold with a spatula just until combined.  Transfer the dough to a generously floured work surface.  Dust the top of the dough with flour, and knead with well floured hands, 6-8 times, just until the dough holds together in a ragged ball.  Add small amounts of flour as needed to prevent sticking.

  • 03

    Roll the dough into a 12-inch square.  Fold the dough into thirds like a business letter (a dough scraper really helps with these steps).  Fold the short ends of the dough into the center in thirds, to form an approximate 4-inch square.  Transfer the dough to a plate lightly dusted with flour and chill in the freezer for 5 minutes.

  • 04

    Return the dough to the floured work surface and roll into an approximately 12-inch square again.  Sprinkle the blueberries evenly over the surface of the dough, and gently press down so that they are slightly embedded in the dough surface.  Using a dough scraper, roll the dough up to form a tight log.  Lay the log seam side down and press the the log into a 12 by 4-inch rectangle.  Using a sharp, floured knife, cut the rectangle crosswise into 4 equal rectangles.  Cut each rectangle diagonally to form 2 triangles.  Transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet.

  • 05

    Brush the tops of the scones with melted butter and sprinkle lightly with sugar.  (If freezing ahead of time, flash freeze on the baking sheet for 20 minutes, then wrap individually and store in a freezer bag until needed.)  Bake until the tops and bottoms are golden brown, 18-25 minutes.  Transfer to a wire rack and let cool at least 10 minutes before serving.

Entertaining from Cook’s Illustrated, Spring 2009, via Annie’s Eats

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  • June 29, 2011 at 7:21 AM

    I always think of New England when I see something with fresh Blueberries…these look delish. Love the addition of the sour cream and lemon zest – yum!

  • June 29, 2011 at 7:38 AM

    These look wonderful!!!! Wow, I want one for bfast!

  • Jacqueline
    June 29, 2011 at 7:49 AM

    I just made these last week and kept half the batch in the freezer for later! I love that you can freeze these, unbaked !

  • June 29, 2011 at 8:20 AM

    Love that photo, the scones look great!

  • June 29, 2011 at 9:50 AM

    Wow these blueberry scones look delicious! I’m so in love with your site and all your pictures, very impressive! Consider me your newest follower! 🙂

  • June 29, 2011 at 10:28 AM

    These scones look perfect! I love the blueberries! Great game plan for summer with all the great fruits and veggies available!

  • June 29, 2011 at 3:28 PM

    These are stunning, Tara! I’m so craving scones right now and will definitely be making these soon.

  • June 29, 2011 at 8:16 PM

    I am from Maine and I know exactly how the short season can effect your eating happens in the summer. I have been known to eat only berries all day long. It might have made my tummy upset but they sure taste good. I am excited just thinking about your picking adventure.

  • Megan B.
    June 29, 2011 at 9:11 PM

    I’ve been making these scones since I first saw them in Cook’s Illustrated … and I completely agree – BEST scones I’ve ever had. They are always devoured. Thanks for posting such a great recipe!

  • June 29, 2011 at 9:15 PM

    delicious looking dessert looks wonderful

  • June 30, 2011 at 12:45 AM

    Ooh I’ve been wanting to make blueberry scones for a couple weeks now. I love the sprinkling of sugar on top of these. Looks so good!

  • Tim in TN
    June 30, 2011 at 6:30 AM

    These are really fantastic…and yours are beautiful, too, with that sparkling sugar on top. I have made these at least 25 times. Now, I often roll the blueberry-studded dough up from the top and the bottom, cutting where the two rolls meet. This gives me twice as many smaller scones, perfect for work pot luck breakfasts or little hands. The other bonus is you get more of the crunchy, toasty outside with each one. Your picture looks perfect.

  • July 3, 2011 at 12:59 AM

    Ooh, I love the method of grating the butter! I just made blueberry lemon scones the other day that are absolutely rockin’, too. Don’t you just love scones??

  • Chris Crocker
    July 19, 2011 at 12:36 AM

    Wonderful recipe. Instead of kneading the dough, I dropped it directly onto cookie sheet using a large serving spoon and baked for 20 minutes. They turned out great. Light and fluffy. Thanks.

  • August 15, 2011 at 10:31 PM

    Blueberry Scones – I just found this recipe searching FoodBuzz. The scones are phenominal! Thank you for this recipe! I also added a couple of tablespoons of pignoli nuts which complimented the tart of the blueberry! I’m adding your blog to mine!

  • marci
    July 4, 2012 at 9:35 PM

    absolutely love these!!! i substituted 1% milk for the whole milk and followed chris’ method of just dropping the dough onto the baking sheet rather than kneading it, and the scones turned out wonderfully! light, fluffy, and delicious. thank you so much for the great recipe 🙂

  • February 1, 2013 at 8:01 PM

    I just made some scones myself! I’m so used to rock-hard chewy, tough, dry, BLAND scones, but Cook’s Illustrated changed my life!! Finally, a scone that’s buttery, tender, soft, and delicate. Mmm. Literally the best thing that I’ve made.

    http://thekitchenkook.blogspot.com/2013/02/the-best-most-perfect-scone-recipe-ever.html

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