Friday, December 12, 2008

Almond Scones

This is a simple and delicious recipe for scones. If you think scones are dry, bland, or yucky, you MUST try these scones. They have a wonderful sweet taste and are fabulous with a hot cup of coffee or tea. They are definitely special enough for Christmas morning or brunch.

Almond Scones

2 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 stick (1/2 cup or 8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, frozen
3 tablespoons almond paste
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 tsp. almond extract
1 egg
Large coarse sugar (like demerara or turbinado)

Move oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat oven to 400ºF. In a medium bowl, stir together flour, 1/3 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Grate butter over flour mixture using large holes of a box grater. Next grate almond paste into the bowl. Use your fingers to work in butter and almond paste (mixture should resemble coarse meal).

In a small bowl, whisk sour cream, almond extract and egg until smooth. Using a fork, stir sour cream mixture into flour mixture until large dough clump forms. Use your hands to press the dough against the bowl into a ball. (The dough will be sticky in places, and there may not seem to be enough liquid at first, but as you press, the dough will come together.)

Place on a lightly floured surface (a pastry cloth works great!) and pat into a 7 or 8 inch circle. Sprinkle the top with coarse sugar. Use a sharp knife to cut into 8 triangles. Place on a parchment lined cookie sheet about 1 inch apart. Bake until golden, about 14 - 17 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes and serve warm or at room temperature.

Important note about scones: It is very important that you do not over mix scones. They will become dry and tough if they are handled too much. You will see butter globs and the edges will be raggedy when you pat it into the circle. It is supposed to look this way. Trust me. If you make these right, you will want to make these often!

I absolutely love these scones! The first time I made them I added some dried cherries after I mixed in the butter and almond paste. They were really good that way, but my kids picked out all the cherries, so I started making them plain. You could also sprinkle some slivered almonds or red and green sugar on top for an extra special look. Hope these make it onto your Christmas (or New Year's) breakfast table!


Anonymous said...

You know, feel free to send any of these baked delights my way. I'd be a happy taste tester!

(and will be testing out your peanut butter cheesecake recipe next Saturday at Bobbie's house. Can't wait!)

Irish Coffeehouse said...

I am definitely trying these out! We always do scones, and I have yet to find any I like. Why? Because I do think they are too dry and just blah. I can't wait!!!!

Living Life said...

I like your recipe for Almond Scones, as we like to have "tea" parties and you simply cannot have tea without the scones!! I may have to try it!