While living in England, I had the most wonderful scones, some plain, some with currants or other dried fruit, but the most delicious scone treat I ever had was a Devonshire cream tea. Scones, either round or pie-shaped were split in half, slathered with a clotted cream and served with a fruit jam. With the ubiquitous cup of English tea, it was a treat just short of heavenly. Slightly kin to our shortcakes with whipped cream and strawberries.
Because I'm a scone aficionado, I had no problem choosing the Cream Scones on page 27 from Baking From My Home to Yours as my pick for this edition of Tuesday with Dorie. Funny, I hosted last July about the same time. The scones were easy to prepare, easy to bake and delicious straight from the oven. When preparing the dough, it is important not to overwork mixing the butter and flour or to overdo mixing the dough when adding the egg/cream mixture. A quick mix and a light hand will deliver the most tender scones.
As Dorie says-these are perfect for every scone-able occasion from breakfast to tea to midnight nibble and also perfect with a tart, chunky citrus marmalade or a bright berry jam. As blueberries are so abundant in the month of July, I chose a homemade blueberry cinnamon jam to serve with my cream scones.
Makes 12 scones.
Serving: Toss these into a basket and bring them to the table with lots of sweet butter and any flavor jam you love.
Storing: These are best served soon after they are made. If you want to save them, wrap them airtight as soon as they cool to room temperature and freeze them for up to 2 months. If you've frozen the scones, reheat them in a 350-degree-F oven.
1 large egg
2/3 cup cold heavy cream
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and chilled
3/4 cup moist, plump currants
Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat.
Stir the egg and cream together.
Whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl. Drop in the butter and , using your fingers, toss to coat the pieces of butter with the flour. Quickly, working with your fingertips (Dorie's favorite method) or a pastry blender, cut and rub the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture is pebbly. You'll have pea-size pieces the size of oatmeal flakes and pieces the size of everything in between--and that's just right.
Pour the egg and cream over the dry ingredients and stir with a fork just until the dough, which will be wet and sticky, comes together. Don't overdo it. Still in the bowl, gently knead the dough by hand, or turn it with a rubber spatula 8-10 times.
Lightly dust a work surface with flour and turn out the dough. Divide it in half. Working with one piece at a time, pat the dough into a rough circle that's about 5 inches in diameter, cut it into 6 wedges and place it on the baking sheet. (At this point, the scones can be frozen on the baking sheet, then wrapped air-tight. Don't defrost before baking--just add about 2 minutes to the baking time.)
Bake the scones for 20 to 22 minutes, or until their tops are golden and firmish. Transfer them to a rack and cool for 10 minutes before serving, or wait for them to cool to room temperature.
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