Friday, March 9, 2012

Buttermilk Scones

3 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup raisins (can substitute for another ingredient of your choice)
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon milk or water, for egg wash 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Combine the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda in a large bowl. Add butter and mix with your fingertips to a coarse meal. Add buttermilk and mix just until combined. Add raisins, if desired.
Transfer dough to a floured board and divide into 2 parts. Roll each into 3/4 inch to 1 inch thick rounds. Cut each round into 8 wedges and place slightly separated on a greased baking sheet. Brush the tops with the egg wash, and bake for 15 minutes, or until lightly browned. Serve warm, split in half with butter and marmalade.
Whenever I use raisins, I soak them in water for 15 minutes.  This plumps up the raisins and makes them juicier for baking.

Prepare your egg wash and set aside for later.
Mix dry ingredients.
Cut cold butter into small pieces.

Mix the butter into the flour with your fingertips.
Mixture should look like coarse meal and be crumbly in texture.
Add buttermilk and stir until just combined.  Do not overmix.  To achieve a delicate scone that is not too dense, handle the dough as little as possible.
Drain the raisins.
Gently stir in the raisins.

Divide dough in half and place the first half on a floured board.
Cut dough into eighths.
You can use a floured pizza cutter to easily cut the dough.
Gently place scones on a lightly greased baking sheet.
Take a pastry brush or a paper towel and dip it in prepared egg wash.

Lightly brush egg wash over scones.  Bake in a 375 degree oven for 15 minutes.
Scones should look nice and golden when finished baking.  After 5 minutes, move to a wire rack to finish cooling.


Happy Baking.


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