Brown Sugar Pecan Scones

I have had this recipe for donkey’s years. But I finally got around to making it. But to be honest, even though I lived in England for a year, I am not sure what scones are supposed to be. They seem a bit dry, in a shortbread kind of way. Is that why the English smother these things with clotted cream (do love that stuff) and perhaps jam? Not sure. But I am a huge fan of brown sugar and pecans. Though after trying these, I think more sugar needs to involved and maybe some tea as well. Although at this point for me it is decaffeinated. But dunking something in tea is very appealing.D&D_1392

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
3/4 cup plus 2 Tbs whipping cream
1/2 cup roughly chopped pecans*
2 Tbs whipping cream, to brush on top of the scones

Preheat oven to 450°+. Stir together flour, brown sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Cut butter into flour mixture with a pastry blender until crumbly and mixture resembles small peas. Freeze 5 minutes. Add 3/4 cup plus 2 Tbs cream and pecans, stirring just until dry ingredients are just moistened.

Turn dough out onto wax paper; gently press or pat dough into a 7-inch round (mixture will be crumbly). Cut round into 8 wedges. Place wedges 2 inches apart on a lightly greased baking sheet. Brush tops of wedges with remaining 2 Tbsp. cream just until moistened.

Notes: + I did this in a 425 degree oven for 14 minutes.

*1 cup Renfroe’s Pecans – local pecans (read: fresh and sweet) – pretty good thing that I like to keep celebrating. We are kind of stupid lucky to have those pecans, not everyone does. Maybe in the South you have a better chance, in Texas, Alabama, Georgia, North Florida – it really makes a difference to have local pecans. Those things you get at the grocery store are so inferior.

Source: Southern Living December 2010

Trying Something New: Lemon Cream Scones

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Lemon Cream Scones

I have never made scones, ever. And to be perfectly honest, I have never even eaten a scone – even after living in England. So this was a total shot in the dark. That said, I was worried about the temp and time in the recipe – it did not make sense to me. 400 degrees for 40 minutes. I get that it was a really wet, shaggy dough, and a bit of a mess but ….

To take an idea from K-9 search and rescue – Trust your dog – well, I need to … Trust my instincts.

Lemon Cream Scones

Makes 8

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface
  • 8 Tbs cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
  • 1/3 cup sugar, plus more for sprinkling
  • 1 Tbs baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp course salt
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream plus 3 Tbs heavy cream
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 Tbs finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine flour, butter, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Mix at low speed until the mixture resembles wet sand.

In a separate bowl, whisk together 3/4 cup cream, 2 eggs, lemon zest, and vanilla. Add the cream mixture to the flour mixture, and beat on low speed until just incorporated. Turn out onto a lightly floured work surface, and form into a flat disk, about 8 inches across and 1 1/2 inches thick. Cut into 8 wedges and transfer to prepared baking sheet.

In a small bowl, whisk together remaining egg and 3 Tbs cream to make an egg wash. Brush scones with egg wash and sprinkle with sugar. bake until the tops are golden brown and firm 40 to 50 minutes.

Source: Martha Stewart

Notes: Okay, I had problems with this recipe (as noted above). Just 30 minutes tops, unless you want the bottom to burn. Needs more lemon; I’m thinking a lemon & confectioners’ sugar glaze – that would work. At least for me. I would also use raw sugar for the top – a little more crunchy. That would be good.

Guess scones go thorough the baking powder. I need to learn the science behind that, but sometimes it’s just more fun not to.

With the scones I baked 30 minutes. They were lovely. Lightly brown, crunchy outside, but light inside.  I could get used to that for breakfast.

Next in scones: Brown Sugar Pecan Scones. I already have the dry measured out in a zip top bag for when I’m in the mood to go another round. This time the recipe seems a bit more reasonable concerning time and temp. And I will also consult my Baking Illustrated cookbook from America’s Test Kitchen to see what they do.

It’s hard, sometimes, when you’ve never made a particular thing before to trust yourself, but this is a lesson learned. I have good instincts in cooking and baking, so I need to trust myself more.