Someone’s all dressed in red for the big v-day tomorrow. And it’s not me. Pink is more of my color.I have been a big fan of making scones since my first batch earlier this summer. Like most of my favorite recipes, they are simple to make, have relatively few ingredients, and have just the slightest feel of “fancy.” Another thing I adore about them is that there are quite literally endless possibilities for adaptation.
When it come right down to it though, the cause of my love for scones is how much my husband enjoys them as well. I came from a family that loves breakfast- we had “breakfast for dinner” night several times a month and would gather ’round the table saturday mornings for good ol’ flapjacks and scrambled eggs. My husband does not share the same sentiment- most days he would rather get breakfast over with in the form of a smoothie than sit down and celebrate the morning meal.
Scones are the one breakfast item that he and I can enjoy together. For this day celebrating love and romance, I baked up something that would inspire him to say, “ah, be still my heart!” and that I would enjoy as well.
This is a basic recipe for scones, given to me by my lovely friend Julia, that I nearly have memorized at this point:
- 1 cup flour (all-purpose works best)
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 t. baking powder
- 1/4 t. salt
- 1/6 cup COLD butter
- 1/2 egg
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/2 t. pure vanilla extract
Directions: Sift together the first four ingredients, and then cut in the butter using a pastry blender or a hand mixer on low speed. The butter should be combined into the dry ingredients only to the point where the texture still looks coarse and there are still pea-sized chunks of butter. Combine the remaining three wet ingredients, and mix into the butter mixture just until everything is wet. Do not over-mix: I usually do this step with a spoon rather than a hand mixer to ensure that the dough does not become too smooth. The beauty of the scone is the flaky, buttery texture that is a result of the butter not being fully incorporated. Fold in whatever mix-in you would like at this point, and then drop by rounded spoonfuls onto a greased cookie sheet and bake at 375 for 15 minutes. Makes six smallish scones- the perfect amount for two.
My substitutions to this recipe were to make it gluten-free by subbing out the regular flour for 1/2 quinoa flour and 1/2 white rice flour. I also substituted regular milk for almond milk, simply because that is what I had on hand. These substitutions made the scones taste slightly earthier/healthier than usual, but Chris and I still enjoyed them immensely. I also folded frozen strawberries into them, and cut them into a traditional triangular scone shape before I baked them.
Although these were delicious on their own, I got festive and made a strawberry syrup to top them with. I boiled 3 oz of frozen strawberries and 1/4 cup of real maple syrup for about 5 minutes, mashing the strawberries up slightly as they broke down into the syrup.
Certainly a sweet start to our day-before-valentine’s day!