March 30, 2013

Cherry Vanilla Scones (for Easter breakfast)

It’s Easter weekend!  It’s totally beautiful out, and I really have to force myself not to do any work.  Do you ever have to force yourself to relax?  

Sleeping in always helps.  A nice walk outside in the almost-springy weather.  And a nice, fresh baked breakfast pastry.  I’m not talking pop tarts here.  

I made these cherry vanilla scones for my parents today, and I also got to play with all my mom’s kitchen things as props.  It’s always fun to switch things up a bit.  I also had some extra instruction from a new book that I bought: “From Plate to Pixel” by Hélène Dujardin (also known as Tartelette).  This book is making me so excited.  I am learning so much about the art of food photography, and it’s just making me wanna whip out the camera and practice all the time.  I can
only aspire to be as talented as she is.  

These scones are delicious fresh out of the oven, slathered in butter or jam.  They are brown and crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, studded with sour cherries.  And they are fast, which is always nice.  Much faster than these cinnamon buns (though these are well worth the time if you have it...).  

These scones speak of breakfast on a relaxing, long-weekend day.  They speak of holidays with family where you eat breakfast at eleven.  They speak of fresh-baked breakfast deliciousness. 

Cherry Vanilla Scones
Adapted from The Best of Fine Cooking: Breakfast and Brunch

2 cups (9 oz.) all purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup dried cherries,
6 tbsp cold butter, cut into cubes
2 egg yolks
3/4 cup whipping or heavy cream

1 egg and 1 tbsp milk for egg wash

Heat oven to 400F and prepare a parchment lined baking sheet.

Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.  Cut dried cherries into desired size pieces and mix into the flour.  Cut butter into flour mixture using a pastry cutter or your fingers until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs (with cherries). 

In a small bowl, whisk egg yolks with heavy cream.  Pour into flour mixture and stir until the mixture forms a shaggy dough.  Knead with your hands until the dough comes together.  Do not knead too much; you want the mixture just together.  
On a lightly floured cutting board, pat dough into a 7 inch diameter, 1 inch thick circle.  Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into 8 triangles.  Place the triangles on the prepared baking sheet. 

Whisk together egg and 1 tbsp milk and brush all over the tops of the scone triangles.  Bake scones in the lower third of the oven for 18-23 minutes or until golden-brown all over.  Let cool slightly on a rack and eat while still warm, slathered in butter. 

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