One of my favorite “work perks” is free reign of a fully stocked pantry. I love rummaging through the cabinets looking for snack inspiration. I often make a simple snack for my cooking class students, especially if they’ll be eating towards the end of class. I’ve made countless cast-iron fritattas, crostini variations and cheese plates. But as the weather cools down, the oven turns up. Scones have become my go-to classroom snack lately, and for good reason. They are ridiculously simple to pull together and the flavor combinations are endless. Depending on my mood or the theme of the class, I’ll throw in fruit, nuts, herbs or even cheese. Unlike biscuits, these are more akin to English cream scones, relying on a heavy dose of the white stuff instead of butter. Yet somehow they come out of the oven super flaky and buttery. They would make a perfect addition to your next brunch or alongside a cup of coffee or milky tea. Let me know what flavors you come up with!
Endlessly Adaptable Scones
makes about 20 to 24 small or 8-10 medium scones
adapted from King Arthur Flour via Joy the Baker
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/3 to 1 1/2 cups heavy cream plus more for brushing the top
- about 3/4 cup of anything (chopped fresh or dried fruit, chocolate chips, toasted nuts, etc.)
- 1 teaspoon citrus zest (optional)
- Raw sugar for topping
- Jam, curd and/ or whipped cream for serving (optional)
Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with a Silpat or parchment paper and set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, backing powder, salt, and sugar. Set aside.
In a liquid measuring cup mix together vanilla extract and 1 1/3 cups cream. Drizzle the cream mixture into the dry ingredients tossing and stirring as you pour in the cream. Add any mix-ins and zest, if using. Toss together. Add 2 more tablespoons of cream if necessary to create a moist, cohesive, but not sticky dough.
Dump the dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Gently gather and knead the dough into a dish and press the disk out into a 3/4″-thickness.
Use a small biscuit cutter to cut small 1 1/4-inch circles from the dough disk. Brush each circle with heave cream and sprinkle generously with turbinado sugar.
Place 1-inch apart on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 12 to 14 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through.
Remove from the oven and serve warm.
1 T. orange zest + 1/3 cup dried cranberries + 1/3 cup chopped toasted pecans
1 T. lemon zest + 1/2 cup fresh berries (such as raspberries or blueberries)
For savory scones, you can omit the sugar and add a few handfuls of shredded cheese and/or herbs