scones

When I buy a cookbook and flip through it for the first time, it’s almost a guarantee that I will flag any recipes utilizing maple syrup.  I absolutely love that stuff.  The only thing that stops me from baking with it more often is its relatively high cost.  Needless to say, I’ve got a long list of maple-inspired recipes to try, and getting through them will take some time.  The oatmeal maple scones from Joanne Chang’s Flour have been sitting atop the list for a few months now, and after they received rave reviews from my friend Di the other day, I was all set to finally make them.

Before I got a chance, though, I came upon a similar recipe in another cookbook and I as read through the intro the authors mentioned that their recipe was inspired by and based upon Joanne Chang’s oatmeal maple scones recipe.  I suppose I could have baked both recipes and done a side-by-side comparison, but since I already had it on good word that the Flour scones were delicious, I decided to make only the adapted recipe this time.  Not that I’m forgetting about the original…I’ll get to those eventually too!

scones

I’ll just cut to the chase – I loved these scones!  They’re sweetened only with maple syrup and while they have nice maple flavor, they’re not overly sweet so you won’t feel like you’re eating dessert for breakfast.  Diced cream cheese is added to the scone dough, and the pieces remain visible even after baking, giving the scones little pockets of creamy richness.  Even though I’m not a coffee drinker, I enjoyed the cappuccino glaze too.  Often I find scone dough overly dry and crumbly, which makes it a big pain to shape and cut the scones, but that wasn’t a problem here.  The unbaked scone wedges are fairly small, and though they rise nicely in the oven, they’re probably still smaller than most of the scones I’ve baked in the past.  Which of course means it’s completely justifiable to have 2 for breakfast :)

Maple Syrup Breakfast Scones with Cappuccino Glaze
from The Sweeter Side of Amy’s Bread by Amy Scherber & Toy Kim Dupree

1 3/4 cups (260 g) all-purpose flour
1 1/8 cups (100 g) old-fashioned oats
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) plus 1 tablespoon (130 g) very cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 cup very cold cream cheese (130 g), cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2/3 cup (75 g) pecans, coarsely chopped (I omitted)
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon milk (I used 1%)
1 large egg (plus 1 egg for eggwash)

Glaze
1/2 teaspoon instant coffee
1/2 teaspoon water
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of kosher salt
1 tablespoon half and half
3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted

Preheat oven to 400 F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Add the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda and salt to the bowl of your food processor.  Pulse a few times to combine.  Add the diced butter and process until the mixture looks like coarse meal, about 10-15 seconds.  Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and add the diced cream cheese and pecans (if using), mixing to distribute them evenly.

In a measuring cup, use a fork to beat the maple syrup, milk and the egg until combined.  Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients.  Use a fork to mix the wet and dry together until the dough starts to come together – don’t overmix.  Flour your hands and gather the dough then divide it into 2 equal pieces.  On a lightly floured work surface, gently shape each half of the dough into a disk that is about 1 1/4 inches tall – you don’t want to compress the dough too much.  Cut each disk into 6 wedges (they will be small) and transfer them to the prepared baking sheet.  Whisk the second egg plus 1 teaspoon of water in a small bowl.  Brush the egg wash generously on the tops of the scones.

Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until golden brown and firm on top.  Transfer the scones to a wire rack to cool.

Meanwhile, make the glaze.  Combine the instant coffee, water, vanilla and salt in a small bowl.  Stir to dissolve the coffee.  Whisk in the half and half and the the confectioners’ sugar until the glaze is completely smooth.  Drizzle the glaze over the cooled scones.

Makes 12 small scones