Sunday, May 17, 2009

Scones


I had every intention of following a recipe. (I know this is hard to believe because I have no photographic proof, but take my word on it, just this one time.) I could blame the big bands and crooners sailing out of my radio, from AM radio 740WJIB, but it is my own fault for not paying attention to which measuring cup I pulled, not the melodic sounds of Frank. My goal was to attempt scones, specifically the fruit scone recipe from Healthy Gluten-Free Cooking by Allen & Kearney, but it went awry around the time that I realized I didn't buy enough yogurt, and decided to make things up as I went, oh and yeah, grabbing the 2/3 measuring cup rather than the 1/2. Here is what I cobbled together and if I may say so, THEY RULE! The original recipe uses more yogurt, so keep some extra dairy handy; yogurt or cream will work well if your dough won't come together. Just add a little at a time till you have a cohesive dough.

Raisin Scones
2/3 cup sweet rice flour
2/3 cup potato starch flour
2/3 cup tapioca starch
3/4 cup corn starch
1 tsp salt
4 tablespoons sugar
2 tsp xanthan gum
4 tsp baking powder
3/4 cup golden raisins - you could substitute regular or dried cherries
1 stick butter
7 oz (small tub) of Greek yogurt - plus a few tablespoons of cream on hand
2 eggs
+1 egg for egg wash (egg well mixed with a splash of cold water)
plastic wrap or extra rice flour for rolling out dough

Preheat the oven to 475F.
1. Combine the dry ingredients.
2. Cut in the butter. Shoot for pea-sized bits of butter. Then stir in the raisins.
3. In a separate bowl, combine the 2 eggs and the yogurt until they are well combined.
4. Make a well in the butter-flours mixture and pour in the egg-yogurt mixture. Work it together till at least half of it is a dough.
5. Turn the dough out onto 2 sheets of plastic wrap (you can use a counter, but keep reading and see why I think the plastic wrap is useful). Work the dough together, kneading and folding it gently to form a cohesive dough.
Using the plastic wrap, lift and fold the dough over and onto itself, then turn it a quarter turn and repeat. This technique will keep your hands off the dough - keep the butter cold - and make it so you do not have to work more flour into the dough by flour the counter.
6. Roll out the dough so its 1" (I did this by folding over the plastic wrap and gently rolling with a pin). Cut into 12-15 scones with a cookie cutter or sharp knife.*
7. Brush the top with the egg wash. You can sprinkle with sugar if you wish, but not necessary.
8. Bake at 475F for 10-11 minutes until the edges are golden brown.
9. Transfer to a wire rack for cooling.
*Don't futz around or handle the dough too much, you want to keep the butter cold so the scones puff when baked.

These came out so much better than I could have hoped for. The texture was spot-on scone: moist, but crumbly, a little sweet but not that much, a good, consistent crumb!



Next time I would add a pinch more of salt and some buttermilk for some tang.

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