In preparation for afternoon tea tomorrow, JLee decided to come over and help me figure out my first ever batch of scones. Whew I'm glad she was there to give extremely important input on what "coarse meal" is supposed to look like and whether freezing butter is a good idea (it is! for scones that is). Later in the afternoon while we were making honey butter to go with the scones, Y came over and we ended up having a mini afternoon tea of our own :-)
Blueberry Scones (adapted from Smitten Kitchen's Dreamy Cream Scones)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbsp baking powder
3 tbsp sugar
5 tbsp frozen salted butter cut into ¼ inch cubes (I know, it’s sacrilege to use salted butter, but that’s what I had and anyway I would have to add in some salt, so I figured it was okay)
1 cup fresh blueberries (SK calls for cranberries, but I wanted to make gooey blueberry scones)
1 cup heavy cream
Put the mixer bowl in the fridge for a while (this is to decrease the chances that the butter will get warm and absorb too much flour, making the scones too dense). According to JLee’s excellent suggestion, put cubes of butter in the freezer – again, to avoid dense scones. Preheat oven to 425.
Sift flour, baking powder, and sugar together in mixer bowl (the sifting helps to build air into the scones so they don't become too dense). Add frozen butter and mix with paddle until the mixture looks like “coarse meal” (I have never before seen coarse meal, but we determined that it should look like flour rubble, with some small bits of butter lumps). Add cream and blueberries, stir with a rubber spatula just until dough starts to form (it will still be a bit floury).
Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Scoop out dough to the size of your liking and shape into round scones with your hands, then plop them onto the parchment paper. Pop the baking sheets with scones into the fridge for a little while (again in the interest of keeping the butter cold, though at this point I wonder if it makes a difference – I’ve found it works well with cookies and keeps them from spreading too much so may as well).
Bake until scone tops are light brown, approximately 15 minutes.
Cool for a few minutes while you make your tea, then enjoy with jam, clotted cream, and perhaps some homemade honey butter!
(For the honey butter I just used the rest of the 1 pint cream that I had bought, whipping it with honey until it came together into delicious creamy butter.)
(makes about 12 scones)
(makes about 12 scones)