There are some days when I can see the eye rolls from my husband and sons even when my back is turned. Another new recipe? Can't we just have something we KNOW we like for dinner tonight? Just once this week, please?
I don't mean to experiment on my family so much. Or, at least, I don't start out intending to turn them into dinner-time guinea pigs but that's how it ends up most days. I can't help it. I see so many possibilities when I stand in front of the produce section and butcher case. And most of those possibilities are not meals that have landed on my table in the past. Why limit myself to what I've already tasted and tried?
But there's something to be said for the familiar. And we all know it. It's the reason comfort food exists. And the reason why so many of those dishes we turn to when we need a break or a lift are the same ones time and time again. We know exactly what we're getting when we reach for our favorite chicken noodle soup, mac and cheese or peanut butter sandwich. It's always the same and there's comfort in that.
Back in the US (when I needed a few minutes of quiet to myself) I'd sneak off to my nearest Starbucks, order a chai tea and pumpkin scone and find a cozy table in the corner. It's one of my favorite indulgences and one that I desperately miss living in Germany. I know it seems silly. I'm in Europe for goodness sakes and there's a bakery on almost every corner! Why on Earth would I miss the ultra-commercialized tea and scone when I could have so much better. But that's the thing. What I can get here may be better (and most assuredly is in most cases), but it's just not the same. And even in the midst of my giddy joy in finding something new to try at the market or finding something fabulously different in a bake shop window I still miss the familiar from time to time.
Makes 9 3-inch scones.
For the recipe, click here.
This is a pretty simple scone to make and is based on my favorite cream scone recipe with a few modifications. The dough is pretty wet, but isn't too difficult to work with. Just give your counter a good dusting with flour and you're in business. These scones make missing America just a little less difficult, but even if you have a Starbucks nearby knowing how to make our own is still a good thing.
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3 tbs brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
a pinch of ground cloves
1 tbs baking powder
6 tbs cold butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup heavy cream, plus 1 tbs
1/3 cup pure pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix!)
6 tbs honey
1 large egg
For the glaze:
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground ginger
enough cream to create a drizzle-able consistency (1 to 2 tbs)
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a non-stick liner.
In a large bowl whisk together the flour, brown sugar, spices and baking powder. Using your finger tips, a pastry blender or two butter knifes cut the butter into the flour mixture until the pieces resemble the size of peas.
In a separate bowl stir together 1/2 cup of heavy cream, the pumpkin, honey and egg. Add all but 1/4 cup of the cream mixture to the dry ingredients and using your hands or a wooden spoon gently stir. If the dough will not hold together when pressed add half of the remaining cream mixture. Give the dough a few more turns in the bowl, adding the rest of the cream mixture as necessary to create a soft and slightly sticky but not overly wet dough. Turn the dough out onto a well floured counter. Gently pat the dough together into a ball and then pat the ball into a 9 by 9 inch square. You can use a biscuit cutter to make 3 inch round scones or using a knife cut the scones into triangles. I like to cut my dough into 9 square scones. Place the scones on the prepared baking sheet and brush the tops with the remaining heavy cream. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until the scones no longer feel wet to the touch and the edges have gone golden.
Let the scones rest on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then remove to cool completely on a wire rack. In the meantime, make the glaze by stirring together the powdered sugar, spices and 1 tbs of the heavy cream. If the glaze is too thick to spread or drizzle stir in up to another tbs of cream. When the scones have cooled completely, drizzle them with the glaze and give them a few minutes for the glaze to set up.
The scones will keep for 2-3 days if kept in an airtight container.