A few years ago, I came up with these ginger-cardamom scones with cacao nibs that my kids loved. Now, cocoa nibs are kind of expensive to buy already shelled from cocoa beans (though if I see a bag of cocoa nibs at Costco or Sam’s Club, I will probably buy them!) so instead of trying to shell cocoa beans myself, I buy chocolate bars with cocoa nibs in them and use those instead. All I have to do is chop up the chocolate bars and use the chunks. So it is almost like using cocoa nibs, right?
I also reworked the previous recipe a little bit: first, by doubling it, so that everyone in our family of 8 could have at least 2 scones, then by reducing the butter, so that I wouldn’t have to cut 2 tablespoons off a second stick of butter to make 16 scones. I’m trying to save a little money. Ok, maybe I’m really just trying to save myself a few seconds.
I also used salted butter in this recipe because it was all the butter I had left. I was out of unsalted butter and hadn’t had a chance to go buy more. Normally, unsalted butter is what I would use.
I currently use Godiva chocolate with cocoa nibs because we live right by an outlet mall with a Godiva outlet. And Josh was able to pick up a 10 pack of these chocolate bars for me from there for about $2.50 each. That’s about what I’d pay for good chocolate bars from the grocery store so I thought it was a good deal. I do use them sparingly though so I don’t go through all 10 bars too fast.
I have a confession to make: I use our blog as a place to store recipes! So I often refer back to my old posts to bake a certain flavor of scones or figure out a macaron recipe. Sometimes, a post will just be a reference for me so that I can find a recipe again. That is likely what this post will be. Perhaps later, I will be able to improve on these scones to really make them pop. I am thinking maybe some cinnamon chips or a cinnamon brown sugar filling.
There is nothing very spectacular about these cinnamon scones, but they are definitely yummy if you like cinnamon! I baked these for an order but wanted to have two types with glaze and two types without glaze. Sadly, these cinnamon-y scones ended up being the unglazed ones. I think they could be brought up a notch with some vanilla glaze though!
I have been baking scones a LOT lately, but that is okay. I’ve been baking different flavors of scones and I am getting to where I can probably start making the basic scone recipe from memory!
I do plan on making July macaron practice month though if I can. So expect a lot of macaron recipes at that time… if I can get my macarons back to where they were before the new oven that is!
I have been sadly absent from the blog the past month! Many, many thanks to my hubby, Josh, for keeping the blog going. I mentioned at the beginning of May that three of our kids have birthdays in May (plus there is Mother’s Day to think about) so I was concentrating on those things as well as a big model rocket launching birthday party we had out in the desert on May 13th. That was definitely one of the more unconventional birthday parties we’ve done!
As Josh said, we have an overabundance of lemons coming from our lemon tree. And that means finding ways to use them other than in lemonade or lemon curd, although lemon curd is definitely something I want to make!
I had been wanting to make blueberry cheesecake scones for a while, but then I realized that they would be even better with lemon added as an extra layer of flavor. I also nailed down my recipe for lemon poppy seed scones. I had never actually written it down in recipe form.
So here are two new lemon scone recipes for you all!
Let’s start with the lemon blueberry cheesecake scones. The most difficult part of making these scones is… how do you get the cheesecake part in? These aren’t the prettiest scones in the world, and I actually thought they tasted just okay. But… I’m not the most reliable taste tester right now as nothing really tastes good to me! So I have to depend on what my family tells me. Josh said these were yummy and I should post about them! They probably could have used some glaze just to make them look prettier but I don’t think the glaze would have added anything in flavor since the cheesecake filling was there to add a punch of lemon.
The cheesecake filling was just 8 ounces of cream cheese, 1 Tablespoon of lemon juice, and 1/2 cup of sugar beaten together until smooth. The filling was too much for one batch of blueberry scones so I ended up making two batches. I attempted to keep the filling from oozing out of the scones too much by patting the each batch of scone dough out into a rectangle, spreading half of the filling over the rectangle, and then folding the dough in a gate fold like you would with paper.
Then, I sealed up all the open edges as best I could. Mostly, the sealing is to prevent the filling from coming out while patting the dough out again and then cutting the dough into wedges. One batch made 16 small scones.
Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake Scones
Note: You can easily double all the ingredients to make 32 scones if you want to use a whole brick of cream cheese.
The lemon poppyseed scones are pretty straightforward so I will just post the recipe. I will note that instead of drizzling the glaze on, I brushed it on so that each scone was covered evenly in the glaze.
Lemon Poppy Seed Scones
I know that finishing the dough on a floured surface does add one step to the usual scone method, but this extra step helps me very much not to overwork the dough. It usually only takes 5-10 kneads before the dough comes together, smooths out, and forms a ball.
Also, baking time is very important! 2-3 minutes makes a big difference between a moist scone and a dry scone! Once the scones are golden on the edges and still pale on top, they only need about 2 more minutes to be perfect. There is also the burnt scone! Which I have done before.
The past three weeks have been a lot busier than I expected them to be! I posted about the macarons I tried to make for the refreshments after my son’s concert on April 8th. Those all ended up being eaten up by my family. Instead, I made chocolate chip cookies, Mary Berry’s lemon drizzle traybake, and sugar cookie custard fruit mini-tarts for the refreshments, all with the help of my mother-in-law. I really could not have made all of those desserts without her help.
And then, just to make things more crazy for myself, we had an early Easter lunch at our house on April 15th. So most of the week before that, I spent prepping the house and the food for Saturday. I’m glad I didn’t have to make all the food for Easter lunch! I did make a strawberry limeade cake with white chocolate buttercream frosting for one of our Easter desserts; I’m not sure if it tasted good or not because I only got one slice! I will try to post about that bake soon.
This past week was spring break for my kids from homeschooling. We drove to a nearby resort and it was so much fun! I had the chance to play with my kids, which is something I don’t always get to do. It was actually pretty nice to take a break from baking. But now, I am ready to get back to baking again.
I was making smaller scones (but not quite mini-size) so I chopped my white chocolate chips and using a pair of scissors, I snipped my dried cranberries into smaller pieces. I also soaked my dried cranberries in a little bit of water and an 1/8 tsp of orange extract before mixing them into the dough, just to make sure they weren’t too dry after baking in the scones. I never fully mix my dough in the bowl because I am afraid of overmixing.
I dumped the dough out onto a floured surface and worked the rest of the flour into the dough using my hands.
It doesn’t take too long for the dough to come together like this. Maybe 5 to 10 minutes.
I doubled my usual scone recipe and patted the dough out into a rectangle that was around 16 inches by 9 inches. I wanted it to be 24 inches by 6 inches, but I didn’t want to pat the dough out too thin. The 16 x 9 rectangle was probably easier to work with anyway.
I used a bench cutter and a ruler to divide the rectangle as evenly as possible. My cuts along the longer side were 2 inches apart, while the shorter side had 3 inch cuts. As shown above, there were 41 scones. I did end up with some scones that were larger than others or were an odd shape.
When will I learn not to bake two cookie sheets at once? This was my second bake of the day and I was ready to be done, but I should have been more patient and baked only one sheet at a time. Because of my impatience, most of the scones in this batch ended up almost burned on the bottom. They weren’t so burned we couldn’t eat them though, so I was glad of that.
I did like the golden brown color on top of the overbaked scones though! Maybe next time, I will use the convection feature on my oven when I bake these.
I made my usual powdered sugar glaze to drizzle over the scones and added about an 1/8 tsp of orange extract to the glaze just to give it more orange flavor.
I was afraid that the orange flavor would be too subtle, but my oldest son said he was able to taste the orange. Twelve of these scones (the nicest ones I could pick out that weren’t burnt) went to our church bookstore, but the rest stayed with us for breakfast. They were gone by this morning, and I have to confess that I was the one who probably ate most of them because they tasted so good!
Orange-Cranberry Scones with White Chocolate Chips
Note: Halve this recipe if you only need 21 small scones instead of 42 small scones.
Last year around Thanksgiving, I had been trying to perfect a pumpkin scone. See the posts for Pumpkin Scones and Back to the Drawing Board: Pumpkin Scones. I realized a few days ago that I never posted the final recipe that I thought was perfect. I ended up using a different scone recipe than I usually do. This new recipe also had the added bonus of making double what my usual recipe does. The original recipe is from Southern Living and is actually a recipe for sweet potato scones. I just modified it to work for pumpkin puree and pumpkin spice instead.
The dough was incredibly easy to work with! I don’t usually end up with such nice, neat circles like in the following picture.
Even though it’s not the holidays anymore, here is the printable recipe in case anyone wants to make these!
Pumpkin Scones with Maple Icing
Just one more thing before I close this post. I do something with my scone dough that probably isn’t a normal thing. In the step where you stir the heavy cream mixture into the batter, I only stir until it is barely holding together. Most of the dough is still very crumbly. What I like to do at this point is pour the crumbly dough (and it does pour and sometimes makes a bit of a crumbly mess!) out onto the floured surface and use a technique similar to “frissage” to make it come together. I usually use this method for making sweet tart dough and pie dough, but it seems to work well for me for making scones also. I plan on making scones again soon so I will try to take pictures of the process the next time I do!