A few weeks ago I had a cranberry orange scone at my local coffee shop. It was good, but I kept thinking, "this could be SO much better". I've been plotting my campaign ever since. This recipe started with this one and this one, which I sort of mixed together and added to. The result, if I do say so myself, is yummy to the max.
Yummy. To. The. MAX.
These scones are moist and sweet. Sweeter than some folx might like, especially with the orange-sugar topping, but they're just to my taste. And of course, the flavored butter takes them to the next level, taste-wise. If you're looking for the perfect scone recipe for your afternoon tea party, try this one.
Cranberry Orange Scones
3 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp grated orange peel
3/4 cup chilled unsalted butter
1 cup dried orange-flavored cranberries (if you can't find the flavored kind, regular will do)
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup orange juice - high pulp
3 tsp orange cream yogurt
Preheat the oven to 400°. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda. Mix in orange peel.
Combine the wet ingredients in a small bowl - orange juice, buttermilk, and yogurt. (Note: the orange cream yogurt was a new item at my grocery store. If you can't find something like it, mix a few drops orange extract into plain yogurt.) Slowly add the liquid to the flour/butter, mixing with a fork until you get moist clumpy dough.
Instead of the usual "round", I formed the dough into a large log, about an inch and a half thick. I cut a slice about every 3 inches. Then I cut these pieces diagonally to form the triangular scone shape. It was way easier to cut that way, IMO.
As you can see, mine were a little close together on the sheet. And they weren't all the same size. I'm not a very precise cook. Both these factors made them cook a little unevenly. I had to remove the littler ones at about 12 minutes, and left the bigger ones in for a bit longer. If you're a sloppy cook like me, just test with a toothpick to make sure the centers are cooked. The tops should be golden brown, and the toothpick should come out dry.
Glaze / Topping
While the scones are cooking, mix together 1/2 cup powdered (confectioners) sugar and 1-2 tbsp orange juice. Drizzle this lightly over the tops of the scones as they cool, when they're fresh out of the oven.
This is what puts the Max in the Yummy. Mix together 1/2 cup softened butter and 3 tbsp orange marmalade.
This was my afternoon tea today. G'head, be jealous, it was a little slice of heaven.
For tea, I had Imperial Red from In Pursuit of Tea, a nice black tea that reminds me of the tea you get in a Chinese restaurant. (What DO they serve at Chinese restaurants?) I don't want to do a real critique of the tea because it was my first cup, and I was totally distracted - flavor-wise - by the extreme deliciosity of the scones. But, it didn't clash or detract, and was a soothing counterpart to the sweetness of the scones.