Friday, July 14, 2017

Marion's Buttermilk Scones

I got to meet Marion and have lunch with her in the 90's when we did COOKING with CHILDREN.
Buttermilk Scones from Baking with Julia

Recipe by: Marion Cunningham


3 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter -- cold (6 ounces), cut into small pieces
1 cup buttermilk --
1 tablespoon grated orange zest -- or lemon zest

1/2 stick unsalted butter -- (2 ounces), melted, for brushing
1/4 cup sugar -- for dusting

4 tablespoons jam -- or jelly,
4 tablespoons dried fruit -- diced
or small, plump, such as currants, raisins,
apricots, or figs, for filling (optional)


Position the oven racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat the oven to 425°F.

Mixing and Kneading: In a medium bowl, stir the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together with a fork. Add the cold butter pieces and, using your fingertips (the first choice), a pastry
blender, or two knives, work the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal.It's OK if some largish pieces of butter remain--they'll add to the scones' flakiness.

Pour in 1 cup buttermilk, toss in the zest, and mix with the fork only until the ingredients are just moistened--you'll havea soft dough with a rough look. (If the dough looks dry, add another tablespoon of
buttermilk.) Gather the dough into a ball, pressing it gently so that it holds
together, turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface, and knead it very briefly--a dozen turns should do it. Cut the dough in half.

TO MAKE TRIANGULAR-SHAPED SCONES, roll one piece of dough into a 1/2-inch-thick circle that is about 7 inches across. Brush the dough with half of the melted butter,
sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of the sugar, and cut the circle into 6 triangles. Place the scones on an ungreased baking sheet and set aside while you roll out the rest of the dough.

TO MAKE ROLLED SCONES, roll one piece of dough into a strip that is 12 inches long and 1/2 inch thick (the piece will not be very wide). Spread the strip with half of the melted butter and dust with half of the sugar. If you want to spread the roll with jam and/or sprinkle it with dried fruits, now's the time to do so; leave a narrow border on a long edge bare. Roll the strip up from a long side like a jelly roll; pinch the seam closed and turn the roll seam side down. Cut the roll in half and cut each piece into six 1-inch-wide roll-ups. Place the rolled scones cut side down on an ungreased baking sheet, leaving a little space between each one. Repeat with the remaining dough.

Baking the Scones: Bake the scones for 10 to 12 minutes, until both the tops and bottoms are golden. Transfer the scones to a rack to cool slightly. These are best served warm but are just fine at room temperature.

If you're not going to eat the scones the day they are made, wrap them airtight and freeze; they'll stay fresh for a month. To serve, defrost the scones at room temperature in their wrappers, then
unwrap and reheat on a baking sheet for 5 minutes in a 350°F oven.

Makes 12 triangular or 24 rolled scones.