Sunday, December 9, 2012

Maple Brown Sugar Scones

I adore scones. But until about a year ago, I had never tried to make them myself - I assumed they were one of those things that you just couldn't make in a home kitchen.  I was content to let coffee shops and bakeries charge me whatever they liked for scones because I loved them that much. Then I found out how easy they were to make at home - and I was 100% hooked.

There's nothing like getting up in the morning and enjoying a warm, fresh-from-the-oven scone. And if the idea of jumping out of bed and mixing up a batch of scone first thing feels a little too Stepford Wives, don't worry - these freeze amazingly well, so all you have to do is stumble out of bed and toss one into the oven on your way into the shower. By the time you're done: fresh, homemade scones to start your day off on a good foot.

Maple Brown Sugar Scones
adapted from Alice Waters' The Art of Simple Food

*2 cups flour (I used half pastry flour, half all purpose)
*2.5 tsp baking powder
*1/2 tsp salt
*1/4 cup brown sugar, plus more for topping
*2 TB maple syrup
*1 cup heavy cream, plus more for topping
*1/3 cup maple yogurt
*1/8 cup oatmeal

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Mix the flour, baking powder, salt, and brown sugar together until evenly blended. Add the maple syrup, heavy cream, and maple yogurt and stir until combined. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead very briefly, until dough holds together.

Form into a 8" circle (no need to be exact here), and cut into 8 triangular pieces.*  Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and brush cream on top of each piece. Sprinkle liberally with brown sugar and top with oatmeal.

Bake for about 17 minutes, until scones turn golden brown.

*If you plan on freezing them, stop here. Freeze them on a baking sheet, then when they're frozen and the danger of them sticking together has passed, toss them into a freezer bag. When you're ready to bake them, brush the cream on and add the topping, then bake at 400 degrees for about 20-25 minutes.

Once they come out of the oven, sit back with a cup of coffee, and enjoy your scones! There are so many ways you could vary these to your tastes... add pomegranate seeds or oatmeal to the dough to give it a little extra texture, or add some cinnamon or nutmeg if you'd like it to be a little more spiced.

Let me know if you make these - I'd love to hear how it goes. Hope you have a wonderful day!

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