Sunday, August 23, 2015

Honey Glazed Berry Scones

When it comes to combining fresh blueberries or blackberries to dough, it is hard for the end result not to look like a bruised lump or have tinges of purple. That is why most bread recipes use dried fruit. There is nothing wrong with dried fruit, but you cannot deny the "gummy bear" type of texture when biting into a chunk of dried fruit. Some recipes remedy this by including a "plumping" or soaking interval for the dried fruit prior to mixing it into the dough, which is a beneficial process.

In light of this information, I decided that frozen fruit is the best choice when you are making a sweet bread type of recipe. The frozen aspect keeps the fruit from tie dying your dough into a purple lump. Also, baked in frozen fruit rates higher on the texture scale than dried fruit.

Dark colored berries, if you did not already know, are the healthiest to eat. I do try to eat fruit for breakfast. However, adding them to cereal, smoothies or yogurt all the time can get boring after awhile. It was time to have something a little different and these scones were the choice. Chock full of a double helping of berries and honey sweetened crust, there was no denying the fact that this chosen difference made my breakfast a little bit more special. Not only did the bread/berry combo turn out to be irresistible, but the honey glaze does double duty with adding sweetness and also keeping the scones from drying out. This recipe makes about 8-12 scones, depending on the cutter size.

Honey Glazed Berry Scones
adapted from A Passion For Baking

2 tsp of vanilla extract
1 egg
1tbs of lemon juice
1 cup whipping cream
3/4 cup or 1 1/2 sticks of butter (cut into cubes)
1/2 cup of sugar
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3 1/2 cups of flour
1/2-3/4 cup frozen blackberries
1/2-3/4 cup frozen blueberries

1/4 cup of milk or melted butter (for brushing prior to baking)
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup unsalted butter

Start the process by stacking 2 baking sheets together and lining the bottom of the top sheet with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

Using a liquid measuring cup, fill with the tablespoon of lemon juice and then the whipping cream. Stir and set aside.

Sift together the flour, baking soda, salt and baking powder in a medium size bowl. Stir in the sugar. Pour the blend into a food processor and drop in the chunks of butter. Pulse until no more dry streaks remain. This should result in a coarse, sand like mixture. 

Transfer dough back into medium size bowl and make a well in the center. Fill the well with the egg, lemon/cream mixture and vanilla. Blend with a wooden spoon until no dry streaks remain. The dough should be able to hold its shape but also be soft. Then fold in the berries.

Prepare a flat surface by dusting lightly with flour. Take dough out of bowl and knead. This process may require more flour to insure that the dough does not expand after cutting. Flatten and shape dough so it is only 1 inch thick. Cut into desired shape (rounds, squares or triangles) and place on parchment lined baking sheet about 1 inch apart.  Brush the top of each scone with the melted butter or milk.

Bake for about 16-19 minutes. Scones are done when they are golden brown on top. While the scones are baking, prepare the glaze.  Fill a liquid measuring cup with honey and butter. Place cup in microwave and heat on high for 45 seconds. Stir mixture and then return to microwave and heat for an additional 45 seconds.

Remove scones from oven when done and place baking sheet on a cooling rack. Then brush lightly with the glaze. Let the scones sit for about 15 minutes and then coat the surface generously again with the rest of the glaze.

Tips and Notes:
1.The purpose of stacking 2 pans together insures that the bottom of the scones do not brown too fast.

2.The frozen fruit should be in separate pieces but not thawed out.

3. Because of the size of the blackberries and the fact they are frozen, the best way to cut the dough is with a sharp blade. It insures a sharp cut into the fruit and also makes for a good height on the scones when baked. 

4. Due to the glaze, the scones will stay moist and flavorful for up to 4 days.

5. Using a food processor is recommended, but you can blend with a mixer and have the same results.
                                   **LAST YEAR:Banana Walnut Tart**