Thursday, February 9, 2012

Blood Orange Sugared Scones

I have a new love of scones (probably the result of an occupational hazard - thank you very much Sassafras Bakery), but had yet to make them myself at home. Enter Jessica's rave reviews of these blood orange scones and I knew I could put it off no longer.
The secret to making any sort of scone or biscuit is this: Use cold butter and don't overwork the dough. Pretty simple, right? And topping it with an orange-peel-infused sugar doesn't hurt, either.
Did I mention the glaze? Blood orange juice + powdered sugar = tasty and perfect for Valentine's Day. ♥
If you don't want to have a bunch of yummy, tender, baked scones sitting on your counter, you're in luck! These can easily be shaped and individually frozen after the dough has been made, allowing you to have something on hand if company drops by, or you find yourself needing a little something sweet. They don't seem to rise quite as high as the unfrozen variety, but I could taste any difference.
Don't have blood oranges? Regular oranges are a perfect substitute. The only thing missing is that lovely pink in the glaze.
Blood Orange Sugared Scones
Yield: 16 scones
  • 3 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar + 2 tablespoons
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cups cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 blood oranges, zested
  • melted butter
Preheat oven to 425° degrees. In a small bowl, combine 1/3 cup sugar with about 1/2 of the grated orange zest. Rub together with your fingers until combined and fragrant.

In large bowl combine flour, orange sugar, salt, baking soda and powder. Using your fingers, a fork or a pastry blender, cut in butter until it forms coarse crumbs (the butter chunks should be a pea-sized, or a little smaller). Stir in buttermilk and vanilla, and add half of the remaining orange zest. Add the juice from 1/2 of one blood orange. Stir with a spoon until a dough forms, using your hands to bring it together. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently. (I kneaded mine in the bowl.)

Divide in half and pat into 7 inch round circles. Alternately, use a large scoop and place on baking sheet. Combine the remaining sugar and orange zest. Brush each scone with melted butter and sprinkle with orange sugar. Cut into 6 or 8 wedges, or use a biscuit cutter to make rounds.
Bake for 12-14 minutes (wedges) or 9-11 minutes (rounds/scoops). Top with blood orange glaze while still warm.

Note: If you can’t find blood oranges, any type of orange can be used for these scones!

To freeze: Shape and cut dough. Top with melted butter and sprinkle on orange sugar. Place in freezer on baking sheet. When completely frozen, the scones can be placed together in a freezer bag or container. Bake on stoneware to prevent bottoms from overbrowning, and increase bake time to 18-21 minutes.

Blood Orange Glaze
  • Juice of one blood orange
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
Stir ingredients together until a smooth glaze forms. Depending on how juicy your orange is, you made need more juice or more sugar. If glaze seems too thin, add in sugar 1 tablespoon at a time. If it seems too thick, add more juice 1/2 teaspoon at a time. Pour over warm scones.

Source: Ever so slightly adapted from How Sweet Eats