This recipe was a bit of an adventure for me. A local bakery makes absolutely out-of-this-world fruit and flax seed scones which I make a daily pilgrimage (albeit, a short one) to buy every day. I am obsessed. They are not like a typical scone – they are dense and brimming with healthy goodness (or, that is what I tell myself when I eat one every day without fail).
Regardless, this is my attempt to reverse-engineer (I’ve always wanted to say I was reverse-engineering something) these fantastic scones. Feel free to suggest any changes you make to it that work for you! I would love to evolve it further, but am pretty pleased with how these turned out for a first attempt. These have lots of energy-rich ingredients, and are great for a healthy, filling snack in the middle of the day. Enjoy with full-bodied black tea for best results 🙂
You will need (for about 12 scones):
- 1 and 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- ~1/2 cup of oats
- ~2 tablespoons ground almond
- ~ 1/3 cup flax seed
- ~3 table spoons sesame seeds (or whatever you prefer)
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 and 1/2 sticks unsalted butter (3/4 cup)
- 1/2 cup golden raisins
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup dried currants
- 1 and 1/4 cups buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup heavy cream (for brushing)
- 1/4 cup icing sugar (for sprinkling)
What you will need to do:
Step 1.Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Step 2. In a large mixing bowl, combine flours, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
Step 3. Add the butter, cut into small pieces, into the mixture.Use your hands (get dirty!), and mix this together until it feels like fairly fine breadcrumbs.
Step 4. Add oats, flax seed, sesame seed, and ground almond to mixture; mix in well with hands (or, if you hate that, a spoon 🙂 ).
Step 5. Add all them fruits!
Step 6. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour in the buttermilk and vanilla extract. Still with your hands (you know you love it) combine the ingredients until everything is wet (but do not knead!)
Step 7. Put some flour out on a cutting board, or counter, and move the dough to that. Gently pat it to make a disc around 1 and 1/2 inches thick. Using a knife, cut out as many triangular scone shapes as you can and lay them on a non-stick sheet. When gathering extra bits of dough together to make another sheet, beware extraneous kneading (you will regret it later!).
Step 8. Brush the top of each scone liberally with the heavy cream, and then sprinkle with icing sugar.
Step 9. Bake for about 12 minutes, or until lightly browned (it depends on how many scones you ended up making- mine are a bit flatter than I would usually make, and I was able to get far more, smaller, scones out of it).
Enjoy! (I am, as I write this, enjoying my second scone of the day!)
February 22nd, 2011 at 7:17 am
Mike you are on fire, I have breakfast ideas aplenty and tasty, healthy ones at that! Although this one will require restocking my larder and a trip to health-food store.
February 22nd, 2011 at 7:46 am
Thanks Tom, though I can’t take credit for this one. My sister Tierney does the occasional dessert/treat post on the blog – this was one of her creations. Mike
February 22nd, 2011 at 12:31 pm
These sound delicious! Ok…since you asked for an ide for any substitutions, I would substitute 3/4 c. nonfat European style yogurt (plain) for 3/4 c. of buttermilk. This would bring the fat down a bit and up the good for you stuff since you seem to be going for the healthy factor with the flax. Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting on my blog today. I will check in with yours regularly now that I have found it!
February 24th, 2011 at 11:51 am
I found your blog from Tall Clover. I am truly amazed that you have a freezer dedicated to berries!
This scone recipe looks quite good–healthy, too, though there is a lot of butter. Could you substitute something with less cholesterol? My doctor would be cross with me for indulging that much. But I’m sure that I’d enjoy it!
February 26th, 2011 at 2:23 pm
Whole Foods also sells a scone like the one you describe. It may even be from the same source. I LOVE these scones. I also love baking but I would never try to bake these scones any more than I would try to write a song that has already been written. Why bother when you can already enjoy the original?
Besides, baking is not like cooking. Cooking is art whereas baking is science. In baking, “close” is still miles away. So my suggestion… Go enjoy the scones at the bakery you love. They already have the recipe and you know where they live. Sounds like you have lots of your own recipes that already work. I’d love to see more of those. Save the reverse engineering for those who try to copy the latest Apple gadget.
February 27th, 2011 at 10:47 am
While I can respect Gastroman’s reluctance to “reverse engineer” a scone when he can buy something store-bought that tastes good, I’m not sure I agree with him. There is a satisfaction that comes from making something from one’s own hands – but maybe that’s just me.
If I followed his advice, then I would never cook at home and would instead eat out every night (which I’m already tempted to do), as I live in New York where I am surrounded with delicious food. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with trying to emulate or put one’s own spin on something that works well. Chefs that I know produce their own innovative creations, sure, but many also tweak or reverse-engineer memorable meals from elsewhere. I’ve tried to do this myself with dishes from restaurants that have delighted my palate – though I wouldn’t be brave enough to try it with baking.
Well done – keep up the cooking adventures! Steve
February 27th, 2011 at 12:13 pm
With all due respect Steve you missed my point. My argument was specific to baking. I also try to make (or make a variation of) many meals that I have enjoyed and I also find the process very satisfying. Sometimes I attempt to put my own spin on them and sometimes not. This is what cooking is all about. My version may have more butter or less wine, more fennel or less beef stock but I taste as I go and I can make it work. Judging by his great number of posts, Gentlemangourmet can also do this.
However, as I said in my original post, baking is science. While you can successfully change the amounts or even skip an ingredient when cooking, leave out the baking soda or double the fat in a baked good and you don’t have a variation you have a disaster. A chef with great technique and experience may seldom look at a recipe but a baker must because a baking recipe is a chemical formula and to develop that formula takes a very long series of trial and error usually resulting in something you would not want to eat.
December 4th, 2011 at 9:00 pm
gastroman, why did you even bother looking at a baking recipe then?
December 4th, 2011 at 9:02 pm
People have different passions, and respect is always appreciated.