Channelling my Inner Ina - A Recipe for Cranberry Orange Scones

>> Saturday, January 30, 2010

I love to cook and readers of my blog will often see recipes of tried and true meals I've made for my family over and over. A baker, however, I am not. I make birthday cakes for my kids and hubby and that's about it. This morning when I woke up I was feeling the overwhelming urge (from who knows where)to try my hand at making scones. Eating scones, I'm very very good at. Baking them, probably not so much- but I'm craving a fresh-from-the-oven cranberry scone and I am lucky enough to have all the stuff I need in the house to do it, so-

I used Ina Garten's recipe from an episode of Barefoot Contessa on Food Network. A side note- I used to hate Ina- something about her mannerisms grated on me- but the more I watch, the more I've become a giant fan. She makes elegant food that is generally neither fussy or overwhelming and she's seriously laid back about entertaining yet she does it well- which I strive for (when in reality I am the maniac that is scrubbing my bathtub moments before guests arrive for fear they'll see a spot of mildew that I missed!). That and the fact that every single thing I've ever made with one of her recipes is divine!

Okay my oozing and gushing over my newfound love for Ina is in check. On to her FAB recipe!

4 cups + 1/4 cup All Purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 TBSP baking powder
2 TBSP orange zest*
3/4 lb unsalted butter, diced (yes that's 3 WHOLE sticks, scones are not diet food, people)
4 XL eggs, beaten**
1 cup cold heavy cream
1 cup dried cranberries, such as Craisins
1 egg beaten with 2 TBSP milk for egg wash
1/2 cup confectioner's sugar whisked with 2 tsp orange juice for glaze

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, combine 4 cups of flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and orange zest. Then add the butter and mix on low until butter is the size of peas. (I don't have the luxury of a large KitchenAid style mixer, and my hand-mixer wasn't up to this task so I just used my hands, which works fine, and is the method used in other recipes I've read.)

Combine the XL eggs and heavy cream, then pour slowly into the flour mixture and run mixer on low until just blended, it should be lumpy. (here you can see my mixer NOT working really well, I went back to using my hands)

In a seperate bowl, toss the cranberries and 1/4 cup of flour to coat, then add to your dough. Mix on low until just blended (I am still using hands at this point)
On a lightly floured surface, knead and roll dough to 3/4" thick. Using a biscuit cutter (cookie cutter, upside down glass, or sandwich crust cutter-offer thing- which is what I used) cut the scones in to 3 inch rounds.
Put them on a baking sheet lined with parchment (Ina's instructions, I just used foil and lightly sprayed it with nonstick spray)

Brush the tops with egg wash and sprinkle lightly with granulated sugar. Bake 20-25 minutes until cooked through and tops are brown.

Cool on wire racks for 15 minutes before topping with glaze.

OMG were these scrumptious! My mom and an old family friend came by for a visit this morning and between hubby and I, our guests and our youngest son I think we polished off 10 of these! My batch made 18, Ina says 15-16. In any case, I have 8 left over which I cooled completely and slid into a zip top bag and popped into the freezer for the next time I have company over for coffee!

* Ina's original recipe calls for 1 TBSP of zest but after reading several reviews, people mentioned that the orange flavor was not "orangy" enough, so I doubled it and it worked really well.

** I did not have XL eggs, so I looked up the proper substitute amount using regular large eggs and found that 5 large eggs can be subsituted for 4 XL


Sharkbytes January 30, 2010 at 10:24 AM  

Those look SO good. But we have cut fat and all that since hubby had a heart attack. I have a healthier recipe... same flavors. But you sure made me hungry!

Tara Beaulieu January 30, 2010 at 10:29 AM  

Oh believe me, I know! I promptly took the leftovers and froze them so we weren't tempted. They are SO bad for us! Special treat only! Thanks for visiting!

Catherine January 30, 2010 at 3:38 PM  

Mmmm, these look good to me!

Maya @ Completely Coastal January 31, 2010 at 6:26 PM  

I have no trouble to believe that they were scrumptious!!

I want to make these, never made anything with cranberries, they're really healthy..., I'm going to try to leave some of the sugar out, hope they are still going to be delic.

Tara Beaulieu January 31, 2010 at 6:50 PM  

Maya- I think you probably could leave out some of the sugar (and even the glaze on top). I don't like my scones very sweet anyway and the dried cranberries have a nice tart and sweet flavor which would probably compensate for some of the sugar. You could also try using liquid sweetener instead.

OLLIE MCKAY'S ~ A Chic Boutique February 2, 2010 at 11:13 AM  

YUMMY!!! I LOVE scones and I also love Corn Pudding Casserole - thanks for sharing both of these recipes!

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