Almost every Thanksgiving, I find myself with a lot of leftover cranberries. This stemmed from not making enough cranberry sauce one year and having to resort to canned cranberries which turned out terrible. Since then I always buy two bags of cranberries in case I have to make another batch of cranberry sauce on the fly. With my leftover cranberries, I would make cranberry and orange scones the following morning for out of town guests.
These are not your typical dry, dense scones but more airy and moist. A drizzle of orange glaze adds a beautiful flavor to them. Fresh cranberries make these scones a bit tart but a knob of butter and spoon of jam should mellow out the tartness. They're perfect with a cup of coffee or tea.
Cranberry and orange scones
2 ½ cups of flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
¼ cup sugar
½ teaspoon salt
8 tbsps cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 cup fresh cranberries
Zest of 1 medium to large orange (reserve 1 teaspoon for the glaze)
1 cup of organic heavy cream and extra for brushing
2 cold, small organic eggs
1 tablespoon sanding sugar
1 teaspoon of orange zest
2 tbsps freshly squeezed orange juice
1 cup of icing sugar
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. In a mixing bowl, whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
3. To make the dough, in a food processor, add the flour mixture and butter pieces and pulse about 10 times to combine. Don't over process them.
4. Transfer the flour mixture back to the mixing bowl, add the cranberries and gently toss to coat.
5. In another mixing bowl, add heavy cream, egg, and orange zest and whisk to combine.
6. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Pour the cream mixture into the well and use a wooden spoon to work the cream into the flour mixture, rotating the bowl and use a folding motion as you go, not a stirring motion.
7. When the dough begins to come together, use a spatula or your hands to gently work the dough into a ball. Add in one teaspoon of cream at a time if there’s a lot of loose flour in the bottom of the bowl until you fully incorporate them.
8. Transfer the dough onto a floured surface and gently pat it into a 7 to 8 inch circle. Use a chef knife to cut the circle into 8 wedges.
9. Place the scones on the lined baking sheet about 1 inch apart. Brush the top with cream and sprinkle with sanding sugar.
10. Place the sheet on the middle rack and bake for 10 minutes. Rotate the pan and bake for another 10-12 minutes until golden and a toothpick inserted into the center of a scone comes out clean.
10. Let the scones rest on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
11. To make the orange glaze, in a small bowl, whisk together orange juice, zest, and icing sugar until smooth.
12.When ready to serve, drizzle the glaze on the scones.
Notes: these scones are better eaten the day of or stored in an airtight container until the next day. Rewarm them in the oven if you plan on eating them the next day. You can also freeze the unbaked scones in the freezer for up to a month.