I know scones are traditionally served for tea, but I like them for breakfast, lunch and for dessert too. They are great baked fresh in the morning with a plateful of scrambled eggs and a latte, for tea in the afternoon with jam and clotted cream and in the evening they are fabulous split and filled with fresh berries or shavings of chocolate and whipped cream. Hey- plain cream scones are even fair game for sandwich material in my house.
Some of my favorite scones are these Cherry-Almond scones with dried, tart Montmorency cherries and toasted almonds. Every bite contains buttery goodness, a bit of sweet-tart cherry and crunchy satisfying almonds.
Cherry Almond Scones
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup cold butter
- 1 cup whole dried Montmorency cherries if you can find them if not use other dried tart cherries
- 1 cup toasted and cooled natural almonds, roughly chopped, reserve a few Tablespoons and chop them a little finer for topping
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 beaten egg for topping
Put the flour, sugar, baking powder, soda and salt in a medium bowl and whisk to combine. Cut the cold butter into small pieces and cut into the flour with a pastry cutter or rub between your fingers until the mixture resembles coarse bread crumbs with a few pea sized butter pieces remaining. Add the cherries and almonds and stir in. Mix the buttermilk, one large egg and extracts together. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the buttermilk mixture. Stir just until combined and the dough starts to pull away from the bowl. Dump out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead only a few times until the dough holds together. Don’t over work as with most short doughs. Pat out into a large circle, brush with a little beaten egg and pat the reserved finely chopped almonds lightly onto the surface. Sprinkle with a little sugar, place the round on a parchment linked or lightly greased baking tray, cut into 8 wedges and separate slightly (a bench scraper works great for this job) and bake in a preheated 375F oven for about 20-25 minutes or until golden and risen and just springs back slightly when very lightly touched in the center.
Serve warm or room temperature. They will keep well covered for a day or two but are best the day they are baked.
Hope you enjoy them any time of the day.