July 4, 2008
Now that I own this big fat book by Dorie Greenspan--Baking From My House to Yours--I figure I should start using it. Every 4th of July, some neighbors have a brunch to which they invite the entire neighborhood. I decided I would bring scones, even though Barb Strand, who hosts the brunch, is a professional chef, and even though she always does homemade biscuits and gravy.
It's always a good idea to have a basic scone recipe that's easy and trustworthy. I generally use one of Rose's two scone recipes in TBB, but I like to try new things. Dorie's recipe uses both cream and butter, and I'm almost always in favor of a recipe that contains both. It's a good combination. I've found that recipes that use just butter are hard to handle and recipes that use just cream aren't as flavorful or flaky, and sometimes get too soft. These, as Goldilocks said, were just right.
I don't like to write out recipes, but, fortunately, if you want to make these scones and if you don't want to buy another fat cookbook, you can just google "Dorie Greenspan" and "cream scones," and you'll find that other, more accommodating people, have already written the recipe down for you.
If you have the book, you should be aware that, although the recipe calls for 3/4 cup of currants, the recipe is missing the instruction that says "add currants." If you were feeling a little slow on the uptake, you might be left a box of currants standing alone on the counter while your cream scones were already in the oven. Not that that would be a tragedy. In my opinion, scones don't really require any fancying up, but it would be too bad, especially if you'd gone out and bought a box of currants especially for the occasion. As I had some dried cherrries on hand, I used those instead of currants.
It occurred to me later that, since I was making these for Independence Day, I should have added, perhaps, blueberries and white chocolate, along with the cherries, for the traditional red, white and blue. That that seems a little over the top, though, and the cherries alone were very nice indeed.
I love scones, especially with clotted cream, although I didn't use clotted cream, it being Independence Day and a time to celebrate our freedom from British tyranny, including, I suppose, clotted cream. But I was a little sad when I learned that I'd been mispronouncing them all these years, and that I shouldn't call them scones, but, rather, something more like scawns. Of course, when you say "scawn," nobody knows what you're talking about, but when you say "scone," with a long o, you know that you are actually incorrect. It's like forte. If you say, "that's not my forte," someone will say, you mean, "for-tay?" Which leads you to avoid the word entirely. So I may just have to make muffins instead.