From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...In my next life I plan to be a shepherd. I'll happily tend my flock, and when I'm bored I'll whip up a gourmet cheese or weave a shawl from the fleece my flock provides. I'll wander fields and sleep beneath star-lit skies and give no thought to schedules or holiday demands. Till then, however, I'm responsible for kitchen logistics and the plans I hope will make the holidays enjoyable for all who assemble at my table. To that end, I've been experimenting with some new breakfast and brunch recipes, and I have found a few that are good enough to share with you this week. I want to start with these delicious and seasonal cranberry scones. I do have one caution. The measurement for sugar in this recipe is given as a range. That's because these scones are barely sweet, and if your palate begs for a truly saccharine breakfast starter, you'll want to use the full measure of sugar that's suggested in the recipe. These scones have wonderful texture and they are simple to make. Just be careful not to overwork the dough as you mix and shape it. I know you will enjoy these pastries. Here is how they are made.
Cranberry Scones...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite inspired by Midwest Living
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 to 1/2 cup sugar + additional sugar for sprinkling
2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup cold butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup whipping cream + additional cream for brushing tops of scones
3 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 cup fresh cranberries, chopped
1/4 cup toasted pecans, chopped
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted
2 teaspoons orange or lemon juice
1 teaspoon melted butter
1 teaspoon milk
1) Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
2) In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Using a pastry blender, cut in 1/3 cup butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Make a well in center of flour mixture.
3) In a small bowl, whisk together egg, whipping cream and vanilla. Stir in cranberries and toasted pecans. Add egg mixture all at once to flour mixture. Using a fork, stir until moistened and a dough forms.
4) Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead dough by folding and gently pressing dough for 10 to 12 strokes or until dough is nearly smooth. Pat or lightly roll dough into an 8-inch square or circle. Cut into 8 rectangles or wedges.
5) Place rectangles or wedges 1-inch apart on prepared baking sheet. Brush rectangles or wedges with additional whipping cream and sprinkle with additional sugar. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes or until lightly golden. Transfer scones to a wire rack. Cool about 10 minutes.
6) Meanwhile, combine confectioners' sugar, juice, butter and milk in a small bowl. Mix well. Drizzle over or ice still warm scones. Serve warm. Yield: 8 servings.
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