Today I was feeling ambitious.
I woke up before dawn to exercise and shower before the kids woke up. Crazy, right?! It felt so good though. I think a little exercise helps my mental health more than my physical health. That’s science.
I also wanted to make these scones I’d had in the back of my mind since this post reminded me that its blood orange season.
I thought I was being ambitious, but it turns out scones are a cinch to pull together. Mix a few things together in one bowl, gently shape and cut them and throw them in the oven. It actually felt easier than muffins, which are my favorite breakfast treat to whip up.
I didn’t have any buttermilk on hand so I made my own. Did you know you can do that? More science. I added 1 tablespoon of distilled white vinegar to 1 cup of milk and let it rest for about 10 minutes while I started mixing the scones. Buttermilk!
There is a lot of leeway in this recipe. If you don’t have a blood orange, any other citrus would be nice. You could cut the amount of butter down to as little as two tablespoons. The scones won’t keep as well without the full amount of butter but will be lower in fat. You could also cut down the granulated sugar or leave it out entirely. The glaze at the end is completely unnecessary (the scones are delicious without it) but adds a nice decorative touch.
These scones would be a beautiful addition to a Valentine’s Day breakfast or ladies’ brunch. They are surprisingly filling and accompany a cup of coffee beautifully. I ate mine with a handful of pomegranate seeds for more beautiful reds and a bit of crunch.
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons granulated sugar
Zest of 1 blood orange
8 tablespoons butter, room temperature.
1 cup sliced or slivered almonds
1 to 1 1/4 cups buttermilk (more in the winter, less in summer)
2/3 cup powdered sugar
Juice of 1 blood orange
Preheat oven to 500ºF. Dust a baking sheet with flour.
In a large bowl, thoroughly mix flours, powder, soda, salt, sugar, and zest. With a pastry blender, two knives, or your fingers, cut in the butter until the mixture looks like fine crumbs. Mix in the almonds. Add the buttermilk and stir for 20 seconds.
Turn the dough out onto a well floured surface and, adding flour as necessary to prevent sticking, gently knead the dough 8 to 10 times. Shape the dough into an 8 inch circle. Using a bench scraper or spatula, cut the dough into 8 equal pie shaped pieces, cutting straight down rather than "sawing" through the dough. Transfer the pieces to the prepared baking sheet, leaving an inch between each.
Turn the oven heat down to 450ºF. Bake the scones for 15 minutes or until just beginning to brown.
While they are cooling, mix together the glaze. In a small bowl, mix powdered sugar with just enough blood orange juice to make a thick glaze. Drizzle over cooled scones. Garnish with pomegranate seeds, if desired.
Adapted from The King Arthur Flour 200th Anniversary Cookbook