Lemon & Cream Scones
Our family just returned from vacation where we indulged in so many wonderful treats. Some of our favorites were the local artisanal ice cream from The Bent Spoon in Princeton, New Jersey and the most amazing pastries from the Gingered Peach.
Now that we're home, cereal seemed like such a let down! I really wanted to make something fantastic for my family as well. We didn't have very many groceries left in the house and I didn't plan any recipes ahead of time, so I needed to make do with what we had on hand. I knew I could whip up a batch of yummy scones by the time a pot of coffee finished brewing, so I started by preheating the oven and dicing a stick of butter. A food processor comes in really handy, but you can always use a pastry blender to make the dough.
I've made scones so many times over the past few years, and I always start with this basic recipe. Other recipes will give you a dough that's less sticky, but I like to start with this and add more flour in by hand if needed. The result is always incredibly light and tender! Be sure to add zest as well as the juice for lots of bright, lemony flavor. I love mixing freshly squeezed juice in the glaze as well, then drizzling it over the tops while they're still a bit warm. Adding 1/2 teaspoon of poppy seeds to the flour mix before adding the wet ingredients would also be a nice touch, if you have them around.
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- zest of one lemon
- the juice of one lemon, divided*
- 1 egg
- 1 stick unsalted butter, cold and diced
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
Preheat the oven to 375°. Place a pie plate filled halfway with water on the bottom rack of the oven. Place the other rack at the halfway point.
In the bowl of a food processor, pulse together the flour, baking powder, lemon zest and salt. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the heavy cream, egg and half of the lemon juice (about 1-2 tablespoons). To the flour mixture, add the cold, cubed butter and pulse until fully incorporated, about 10 to 15 times. Then slowly incorporate the wet ingredients bypassing until it just pulls together. Pulsing too much can cause a very sticky dough!
Turn the batter out onto parchment paper or wax paper or flowered cutting board. Add a little extra flower until the dough is easier to handle. Form into a 12 inch square. Cut into 16 small but equal triangles. (See the picture and description here.) Spray a mini scone pan with nonstick baking spray and place each dough triangle into the pan. (You can also place each unbaked scone onto a silicone baking mat on a cookie tray, if you don't own a pan.) Bake in the oven for 15 to 16 minutes until they are puffed and lightly golden. (They will be dry to the touch.)
Let them sit in the pan/on the tray for another five minutes before removing each one to a cooling grid. Let them cool for another five or ten minutes; meanwhile prepare the glaze.
- 1 cup confectioners sugar
- 1-2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice (reserved from earlier)*
- 2-4 tablespoons heavy cream
Whisk ingredients together to the desired consistency. Once scones have cooled to the touch, drizzle the glaze over the top with a whisk or fork. Enjoy!
Yield: 16 mini scones