Thursday, July 28, 2011

We're back with TWO types of scones!

We're still here! We deeply apologize for being MIA for so long. School got very busy since the last post (wow was it really in December???), and though we did continue to cook and eat, we did not take photos and document the processes. But we're back with a new recipe that you're sure to enjoy.

Music - Genuine Negro Jig by the Carolina Chocolate Drops
This band is from North Carolina, and we just saw them perform at the Grassroots Festival of Music and Dance in Trumansburg. They are a whole lot of fun - with multiple banjos, fiddles, guitars, bone-playing and beat-boxing - oh and a kick-ass female singer who somehow makes bluegrass and Alicia Keys fit together perfectly! This group makes lovely music.

Baking - Dried Cherry and Chocolate Chip Scones
Ham and Cheddar Scones

Though one type is savory and the other is sweet, both of these scones start from the same base recipe for cream scones. The difference lies simply in what you add to the dough, plus a bit of milk-brushing and sugar-sprinkling just before baking. So pick whichever flavor sounds better to you and go for it. Or make them both like we did - they won't last long.

A wall of cheddar cheese, soon to be cubed

First, you combine the dry ingredients - 510 grams of bread flour, 119 grams of sugar, and 30 grams of baking powder. If you're doing both types of scones, do this twice in two separate bowls. Then you add the distinctive ingredients: 1 cup of chocolate chips and 3/4 cup dried cherries OR ham and cheddar cheese (not both).

The ham and cheddar tumbling into their ingredients

Dried cherries and chocolate chips

Once they're nice and mixed together, add 14.5 fl oz of heavy cream and mix the dough until combined.

We opted to mix the dough with our hands; it seemed easier that way.

Then divide each dough into two blobs and flatten them into circular slabs that are about 9 inches in diameter. Place them on parchment paper and freeze them thoroughly. This unfortunately takes a long time, so no instant gratification here.

Dough awaiting the freezer

The next day, or a few hours later, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and cut the slabs into wedges. This is tough to do because they're frozen solid, but you want to bake them frozen in order for them to keep their shape, so roll up your sleeves and put your back into it!

Line baking sheets with parchment paper (we used the same paper that the dough froze in) and lay the scones out. Give them a little wiggle room, because they do spread a bit. For the cherry chocolate scones, brush the tops with milk and then sprinkle the scones with sugar. The recipe called for coarse sugar, but normal sugar works just fine.

The scones bake in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown, and they are simply delicious when the come out.
The cherry chocolate chip scones were lighter, while the ham and cheddar scones were more creamy.
We argued for a while about which was better, but it's really not a problem because they are both extremely tasty. 4 dozen scones barely lasted 24 hours in the house!