~ Top of the Mornin' to Irish Cream & Raisin Scones ~
"I asked the maid in dulcet tone, to order me a buttered scone. The silly girl has been and gone, and ordered me a buttered scone." Scone. What an odd little word. All I really knew about them as a child was I loved them. That said, the ones I grew up eating were round, single-serving little cakes resemblant of biscuits, not a raggedy, rough, plate-sized round cut into triangles. So, before I sat down to share my recipe with you, I did look it up to be sure mine are indeed scones -- they are. Scones are universal, but, they are most associated with the British and the Irish.
A bit about the scone (SKOHN): Originally, scones were indeed large, flat, unleavened rounds. They were made with oats and cooked on a griddle. The large round cake was referred to as a "bannock", and, the triangles cut from it: "scones". When baking powder became available to the world, the scone began to "take shape" (they were cut into individual rounds, squares or triangles), and, they were baked in the oven. The end product was much lighter, and, it wasn't long before bakers began incorporating flour into their recipes for a less crumbly texture. Baking powder classifies the scone as a quick-bread or a type of pastry (since it is slightly sweetened). This differs from the English tea cake and other sweet buns that are made using yeast.
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup salted butter, cut into 1/2" cubes and kept chilled (1 stick)
2/3 cup Bailey's Irish Cream coffee creamer + a small amount of milk (only if necessary)
1 large egg, beaten
1 cup raisins, dark or golden
1 large egg white beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
Let's chat: Because I like a blurp of cream in my coffee and my tea, and, because I enjoy fancy-schmancy flavored-creamers, it's natural for me to use them to make scones (in place of milk and sugar). My favorite flavors: Bailey's Irish cream, French vanilla and hazelnut. If you're not a fan of these sweet indulgences, you can still make these scones. In place of the creamer use: 2/3 cups whole milk, 1/3 cup sugar, and 2 teaspoons of vanilla or your favorite extract!
~Step 1. In a large bowl, stir the flour, baking powder and salt. Add the butter cubes. Using a pastry blender and a knife, cut butter into the dry mix, until it resembles pea-sized crumbs.
~Step 2. Fold in half of the creamer, followed by the egg. Begin folding the rest of the creamer in, a little at a time, until a rough dough starts to form. Add the raisins. Using your hand, fold the raisins into the dough and gather the dough up into a very soft but easily manageable ball.
Troubleshooting tips from Mel: I add all of the creamer, but depending upon your brand of flour, stop adding it if the dough starts to get sticky. In the event your dough does get sticky add a bit of additional flour. In the event your dough won't form a manageable ball, add a bit of milk.
Gather up the scraps of dough and reroll them, continuing to form scones until all dough is used. You should have two dozen.
As each pan comes out of the oven, immediately transfer scones to a cooling rack. If you've lined your baking pans with parchment, you can just pick them up with your fingertips. Serve warm or at room temperature with sweet cream butter and/or jam. Enjoy with your favorite cup of coffee or tea!
Special Equipment List: spoon; pastry blender; paring knife; 1-cup measuring container; fork; large spoon; pastry board; rolling pin; 2"-round biscuit cutter; 2, 17 1/2" x 12 1/2" baking pans; parchment paper; cooling rack
Cook's Note: For my ~ Irish Eyes are Smilin' on Mary's Irish Soda Bread ~, just click into Categories 5, 11 or 20. This recipe was given to me by my close-friend Irish girlfriend Mary Teresa Howe. I hope she's doing something fun today -- I think I'll give her a call!
"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti
(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2015