Monday, March 4, 2013

Cherry Almond Scones

Both almond and cherry trees have light to dark pink flowers and wonderful green leaves. Almonds are native to South Asia and the Middle East. They are beautiful both shelled and unshelled. The meat (nut) is delicious both raw or toasted, and the shells are used for hundres of reasons (face scrubs are my personal favorite). In this recipe though, sliced almonds are a beautiful contrast to the sweet tartness of dried cherries. 

If you've ever cooked with almond extract before, I hope you've taken a moment to pass the bottle  under your nose once or twice and smell the sweet gentleness that it affords to your senses. There is a kind of muted effulgent scent that seems to seep into your soul, a tangible creaminess that almost comes to life in the form of a small graceful dancer. Add dried cherries to that,  and you have yourself a little bit of elegant pazza for an afternoon tea snack.


In food processor combine the following. If you don't have a food processor, mix dry ingredients, then cut in butter with a pastry cutter. Combine until the butter the is well incorporated, and the dough is crumb-like.

1 c flour
1/3 c sugar
1/2 t baking powder
dash of salt
1/4 c butter


1 t lemon juice (or 1/2 t lemon zest)
1/3 c dried cherries
1/4 c sliced almonds
1/8 c cream
1/2 t almond extract
1/4 t vanilla extract

Mix until well incorporated. It will still be crumbly most likely. Form into a ball, divide into two and roll into 1" thick rounds. Cut into wedges, and bake 20 minutes.

Glaze these sucker while they're hot, add some of your favorite spices to the remaining glaze, and drizzle once they cool down.

1/3 cup powder sugar
1 1/2 tsp half and half
1/4 tsp almond extract
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Glazed, or unglazed, these are crumbly, chewy, and crunchy in just the right ratio. The glaze offers  a little more sweetness to those who crave it.


Short Hand:
Combine dry ingredients, add butter. Add liquids, cherries, and almonds. Roll into rounds, bake at 400ยบ for 20 mins. Glaze.

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