Scones have a bad reputation, largely owing to those triangle shaped atrocities that you’re afraid to break your teeth on at sub-par chain coffee shops. But that’s not the way it has to be. I humbly submit that it’s time to get sconed, and this is the recipe to take you there: simple blueberry scones with a great crumb, texture, and taste.
The Baking Steel works the same magic here that it does on biscuits, creating a crisp exterior with a tender, moist interior. When scones cook evenly, it means that the edges aren’t dried-out by the time that the inside is cooked through. But don’t take my word on it: let me know what you think, after you've eaten about 6 of these.
Blueberry Buttermilk Scones
Makes about 8
550 grams (4 cups) all purpose flour
70 grams (1/2 cup) coarse sugar, plus more for garnish
10 grams (2 teaspoons) fine sea salt
12 grams (1 tablespoons) baking powder
4 grams (1 teaspoon) baking soda
226 grams (16 tablespoons, or 1 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
370 grams (1-1/2 cups) buttermilk, plus more for brushing the tops of the scones
135 grams (3/4 cup) blueberries (or other sliced fruit) (see note)
15 grams (2 tablespoons) buttermilk for washing
Position a rack in the middle position of your oven and place the Baking Steel on top. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F for 45-60 minutes.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda.
Add the cubed butter and press the pieces into the dry mixture using chilled hands or a pastry cutter until the mixture resembles a coarse meal.
Add the buttermilk and blueberries and mix together just until no floury bits are clinging to the sides of the bowl.
Turn the dough out on a floured work surface and roll into a circle approximately 1-inch thick and 12” across. Cut, pizza-style, into 8 wedges.
Place the scones on a sheet of parchment paper.
Brush the tops of the scones with buttermilk and sprinkle with more coarse sugar.
Either place your parchment onto a sheet try and place on your Baking Steel, or launch the parchment sheet directly onto your Steel using a pizza peel. Bake for 13-15 minutes, rotating at the halfway mark, or until golden on the top and sides. Remove from the Steel, and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Store well-wrapped leftovers at room temperature for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 1 month.
The curious case of the soggy scones. Are you hesitant to make scones or muffins with fresh fruit because it always sinks and makes for a soggy bottom? Happily, it’s possible to avoid that disappointment. Simply toss the fruit briefly with a tablespoon or so of flour; just enough to give them a coating. The flour absorbs some of the fruit’s moisture, which keeps it afloat long enough for the baked goods to “set”.