Years ago I had a fabulous stay at the Inn at Sweetwater Farm, a sweet little B&B tucked into the Berkshires. A magical wall of cookbooks graced the sitting room (my idea of heaven). Freshly baked treats were always available on the sideboard and farm-fresh breakfasts were a morning staple. One of the treats I remember fondly were these scones. That morning, the aroma of apricot and butter drifted upstairs to the bedroom, luring me out of a restful slumber.
I happened to stumble upon the recipe I scratched down that trip and knew I had to make up a batch of these divine beauties. It's been somewhat of a tough week, I'm not going to lie. It's Day X of rain this spring as we enter Day ?? of quarantine. I suppose I'm in need of a little cheer up. I took some chocolatey creative liberties with the add-ins, and instead of apricot, I used generously-sized chopped chunks of my dark chocolate, Caffeinated Moose to be exact. The added jolt of coffee is a perfect pick-me-up.
This recipe is ever so slightly adapted from the proprietor's dear friend, a "killer baker" named Peg. And thus, they are known as Peg's Scones.
2 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar*
¾ tsp baking powder
¾ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter, slightly softened
¼ cup full fat plain yogurt
¼ cup heavy cream (sub milk if you don't have cream)
½ - 1 cup add-ins**
* original recipe calls for 1/2 cup, but I don't like 'em too sweet
**Get creative! The scones at the B&B were dried apricot. I'm using espresso chocolate chunk today. I've also done freshly picked wild blueberries that were heavenly.
Preheat oven to 425°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. (If you're like me and bake on a whim and don't have butter out softening already, place the stick of butter on the back of the stove where it's warmest and by the time you need it, it should be soft enough).
Mix together first 5 ingredients in a bowl or in a food processor, making sure everything is fully blended (I'm looking at you, baking powder). Cut in the butter. You can blitz in the food processor until it looks like coarse corn meal or cut the butter into chunks and rub the flour mixture and butter between your thumb and fingers until you get the same results.
Cut in the yogurt and cream a little at a time until the dough stays together but isn't too wet. Flour is finicky and all this rain and humidity isn't helping matters. Trust your gut and go by feel.
Add the goodies, whether that's chocolate chunks, dried apricots, berries, nuts, whatever you've got on hand. These scones are a blank canvas, perfect for pairing with whatever you've got left in your pantry.
Shaping the Scones
Pat the dough out on a floured surface until it is about 8 or 9 inches in diameter. Cut into wedges or use a biscuit cutter and cut them into what ever shape you like.
You can freeze them right now on a baking sheet and stash them in a ziplock bag when they are frozen and bake them right from the freezer whenever you want scones for breakfast (or dessert)! If you are carrying on, place them on the baking sheet and bake for 12-14 minutes or until just brown.
These taste best fresh out of the hot oven. Trust me. I couldn't resist eating some before I photographed them. No need for added butter or jam, but those wouldn't hurt matters, either!