For the longest time, I’ve been intimidated by scones.
Not in the “omg I’m making a presentation in front of a board of directors filled with powerful men and women and omg are my armpits sweating?” kind of way, nor in the “gahh this guy beside me in yoga class is so hot and his chatarunga is perfect and he just smiled at me but I’m not sure because I’m blinded by my own sweat” kind of nervousness or even in the “I just met a famous person and she just shook my hand and oh gosh my hands are so sweaty” kind of intimidation.
Scones are just intimidating because it’s so… British? Something that the queen might eat at a tea party? Too proper or too dainty?
I don’t know.
Because what you should know about me (aside from the fact that I do sweat a lot) is that those words don’t really fit me. Well, except maybe for queen…
Proper and dainty and British aren’t words used to describe my baked goods either.
But I’ve eaten enough scones by now to know that they aren’t necessarily that precious. In fact, I’ve had plenty of lumpy, misshapen, rustic looking scones. And if there’s one thing that makes me want to buy an entire Anthropologie store and bake some breakfast goods all day everyday, it’s the word rustic.
So I tried my hand at making scones. For the first time ever.
I always thought that scones would be hard to make, but in fact these were just the opposite. This is a one-bowl recipe. I didn’t use a mixer, or a biscuit cutter. And I read plenty of other recipes to know that if your dough is too wet, just add a tablespoon or more of flour. Or if your dough is too dry, just add a tablespoon or more of milk.
In other words, it’s an easy, forgiving recipe.
And what do you know? these Cranberry Orange Scones turned out to be just lovely. Buttery, crumbly, studded with sweet cranberries, and brightened with orange zest.
Rustic looking, yes. Intimidating, no.
Cranberry Orange Scones
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, chilledd, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon orange zest
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1 tablespoon sanding sugar
- Preheat oven to 425 F.
- In a big mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and brown sugar. Add the cold butter and cut into mixture with two knives (or a pastry cutter) until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Stir in cream and orange zest and mix just until blended and moistened. Fold in cranberries.
- Form golf ball-sized scoops (I just eyeballed it) and place dough rounds on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet (I ended up with 9 scones). Sprinkle tops with sanding sugar. Bake for 12-15 minutes until the tops are golden brown. Cool for at least 10 minutes. Serve plain or with orange marmalade and butter.
Make these scones soon. No need to sweat it.
On a more serious and somber note, a couple of days ago the Philippines was slammed by a super typhoon – one of the most devastating typhoons on record – with a death toll of over 1o,000. My family is safe and spared from harm, but many others are greatly suffering, and there is massive destruction. If anyone would like to help and donate to relief efforts, you can donate via Unicef, Red Cross Philippines, or Save the Children. And thank you to everyone who reached out to me asking about my family. I truly appreciate your concern.