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June 01, 2013

Lemon Blueberry Scones In Real Life

** These pictures were not staged.  All were taken with my phone in a very dimly lit kitchen.  Real life.**

It was an early morning here, something that doesn’t happen very often.  I guess we’re still partially on Europe time.  I found myself awake and staring at the ceiling thinking about what to make for breakfast.  The lemons and blueberries I bought yesterday seemed destined to come together in a warm and crumbly pastry.


It’s a cloudy, gloomy day and the lemons look and smell like sunshine. Real life is that I walk into a kitchen that we didn’t feel like cleaning yesterday. I turn on the espresso machine and contemplate how best to use the bowls and measuring spoons that are scattered, used, from the batch of cookies I made last night. Real life is that a bowl that held flour is reused without washing.  The used parchment lined baking sheet is perfect for another batch of something.



I rummage around for my go-to scone recipe that I will modify only slightly.  Butter, brown sugar, flour, and butter come together quickly.  A shaggy dough is formed with egg yolks and cream.  The additions of lemon juice, zest, and blueberries are specific to this morning. 


Alex stumbles out of the bedroom to the smell of baked goods and hot coffee.  As the smells waft around the kitchen, I load the dishwasher and clean up a bit.  We sit at our computers and catch up on the internet as the scones cool, sipping our coffee from our favourite weekend mugs.  Every once in a while, when one of us finds something interesting, we’ll roll on our chairs and look together.  Very minimal talking is required in the morning. 


Breakfast is eaten while planning the rest of the day, which is a lot longer when breakfast is actually had at breakfast time and not lunch time.



A new burger place is opening not too far away.  It should be good.  We still haven’t seen the new Star Trek movie.  With the kitchen a little cleaner, the day is full of possibilities.  That’s real life. 

Lemon Blueberry Scones
Adapted from The Best of Fine Cooking: Breakfast and Brunch

9 oz all purpose flour
2  1/4 oz brown sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
6 tbsp cold butter, cut into cubes
1 cup blueberries (fresh or thawed and drained well)
2 tsp lemon zest
2 egg yolks
3/4 cup whipping or heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp lemon juice

Heavy cream and coarse sugar

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

Sift together flour, brown sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.  Cut butter into flour mixture using a pastry cutter or your fingers until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.  Mix in lemon zest.  Gently mix in blueberries, trying not to crush them. 

In a small bowl, whisk egg yolks with heavy cream.  Stir in vanilla and lemon juice.   Pour into flour mixture and stir until the mixture forms a shaggy dough.  Use your hands to get the dough to come together.  Do not overwork; you want the mixture just together; it’s ok if there’s some flour left on the bottom of your bowl.   If you were using frozen blueberries, your dough will be a bit more blue.  That’s ok.

On a lightly floured cutting board or directly on your parchment lined baking sheet, 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.  



Brush some heavy cream all over the tops of the scone triangles and sprinkle with coarse sugar.  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.

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