I needed a homework distraction afternoon baking project. I decided to make scones from a recipe I bookmarked a while back. The original recipe calls for apricots, but I used raisins because that's what I had on hand. These would be yummy with chocolate chips or any other dried fruit.
(adapted from Orangette)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup pastry flour
2 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. table salt
4 Tbsp. (½ stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes
¼ cup sugar
½ cup raisins
½ cup half-and-half, plus more for glazing
1 large egg
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, and salt. Using your hands, rub the butter into the flour mixture, squeezing and pinching with your fingertips until there are no butter lumps bigger than a large pea. Add the sugar and dried apricots, and whisk to incorporate.
Pour the half-and-half into a small bowl, and add the egg. Beat with a fork to mix well. Pour the wet ingredients into the flour mixture, and stir (with the fork; it works fine) to just combine. The dough will look shaggy and rough, and there may be some unincorporated flour at the bottom of the bowl. Don’t worry about that. Using your hands, gently press and shape the dough, so that it holds together in a messy clump. Turn the dough and any excess flour out onto a board or countertop, and press and gather and knead it until it just comes together. Ideally, do not knead more than 12 times. As soon as the dough holds together, pat it into a rough circle about 1 ½ inches thick. Cut the circle into 8 wedges.
Put the wedges on the prepared baking sheet. Pour a splash of half-and-half into a small bowl. Using a pastry brush, brush the tops of the scones with a thin coat to glaze. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until pale golden. Transfer to a wire rack to cool slightly. Serve warm.
Yield: 8 small scones