Monday, November 7, 2011

Cranberry Scones

If you've been with me on this blogging journey since last November, then you'll recall my fondness for tart little cranberries, and my excitement when they hit the grocery store shelves.  These bright red berries definitely deserve a place on your table more than just one day a year (ahem, Thanksgiving), and definitely have more applications than tired-old cranberry sauce.

These scones feature fresh cranberries for a variation on the more standard raisins or currants.  They're best served warm from the oven.

  • 1 and 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup vegan sugar
  • 1/4 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons vegan butter
  • 1/2 cup halved fresh cranberries*
  • 1/2 cup vegan buttermilk**
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated orange rind
  • 1 Ener-G egg
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 teaspoon vegan powdered sugar
1. Lightly spoon the flour into dry measuring cups and level with a knife.  Combine the flour in a bowl with the sugar, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  Cut the butter into small pieces, and cut into the flour mixture with a pastry blender until the mixture looks like coarse meal.  Stir in the cranberries.

2. In a bowl, combine the buttermilk, orange rind, and Ener-G egg.  Add the buttermilk mixture to the flour mixture, stirring just until moist.

3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead about 5 times.  I recommend using floured hands when you knead scone dough, since it can be sticky; that said, this was by far the most workable scone dough I've ever made - a pleasant surprise.  Transfer the dough to a baking sheet coated with cooking spray and pat into a 7-inch circle.  Cut into 10 wedges, cutting into but not all the way through the dough.

4. Bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes - the scones should be golden.  Sift the powdered sugar over the scones and serve warm.

*I've never halved cranberries before, and actually was startled at how white the interior is. The key thing to look for, when purchasing cranberries, is berries that are plump and round, with a smooth outer skin.

**To make the buttermilk for this recipe, place 1 and 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice in a liquid measuring cup, and fill with plain non-dairy milk to equal 1/2 cup.  Let stand for 5 minutes so the mixture can clabber (sour), then add to the recipe as directed.  Don't substitute non-dairy milk in its place; the baking soda needs to react with the acidity in the lemon juice to help the scones rise during baking.

Nutrition Info:
10 servings (1 scone), Calories 168

Tasting Notes:
A nice contrast between the tart cranberries and the sweet sprinkle of powdered sugar on top.  The cornmeal flavor was quite strong, making these scones more like a cross between cornbread and a scone.   Although yummy, I would use whole wheat flour in place of the cornmeal next time, for a more traditional scone taste and flavor. 


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