I’ve made these scones many times—they may very well be my favorite of all. They are so beautifully light, billowy, and flaky with just a hint of orange flavoring and spotted with cranberries. This recipe can easily be adapted to use other dried fruit or citrus flavoring.
I usually use the zest of an entire large orange to amp up the flavor a bit, and I use vanilla sugar instead of regular sugar. This time, instead of making the orange glaze, I simply sprinkled each scone with a dusting of demerara (or turbinado) sugar on top of the egg wash. I also like to make my scones on the petite side—(some of the large ones are just too much for me to eat at one time)—so I used a 2 ½-inch fluted cookie cutter. Since they were smaller, I baked them for no more than 18 minutes.
Thanks to Em of The Repressed Pastry Chef for selecting this month’s Barefoot Bloggers Bonus Recipe Challenge. I love any excuse to make these scones!
Source: Cranberry Orange Scones, Barefoot Contessa at Home
4 cups plus ¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup sugar, plus additional for sprinkling
2 tablespoons baking powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
¾ pound cold unsalted butter, diced
4 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup cold heavy cream
1 cup dried cranberries
1 egg beaten with 2 tablespoons water or milk, for egg wash
½ cup confectioners' sugar, plus 2 tablespoons
4 teaspoons freshly squeezed orange juice
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix 4 cups of flour, ¼ cup sugar, the baking powder, salt and orange zest. Add the cold butter and mix at the lowest speed until the butter is the size of peas. Combine the eggs and heavy cream and, with the mixer on low speed, slowly pour into the flour and butter mixture. Mix until just blended. The dough will look lumpy! Combine the dried cranberries and ¼ cup of flour, add to the dough, and mix on low speed until blended.
Dump the dough onto a well-floured surface and knead it into a ball. Flour your hands and a rolling pin and roll the dough ¾-inch thick. You should see small bits of butter in the dough. Keep moving the dough on the floured board so it doesn't stick. Flour a 3-inch round plain or fluted cutter and cut circles of dough. Place the scones on a baking pan lined with parchment paper. Collect the scraps neatly, roll them out, and cut more circles.
Brush the tops of the scones with egg wash, sprinkle with sugar, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the tops are browned and the insides are fully baked. The scones will be firm to the touch. Allow the scones to cool for 15 minutes and then whisk together the confectioners' sugar and orange juice, and drizzle over the scones.