Can you believe we’re a month away from Christmas? I can’t believe how long it’s been since I thought about tomatoes. I’m thinking about cranberries these days, and maple syrup and shortbread cookies and root vegetables and squash and foggy-skinned red local apples. American Thanksgiving is this week. I keep seeing commercials for Black Friday, hearing Christmas music in every little store I duck into, and finding egg nog and candy cane ice cream on grocery shelves where neither was before.
You may wake up early this week with a to-do list to fit the season and a hankering for something warm, and when you do, could I recommend scones? Cranberry scones, with maple syrup and brown sugar. Not too sweet, and very nice with a hot cup of tea.
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 1 tbsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 3/4 cup cold butter, cubed
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup chilled whole milk
- 2 tbsp. maple syrup
- 1 cup fresh cranberries, chopped
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Squeeze the butter between your fingers, as if you were making pie crust. I seem to say this a lot. Maybe I talk too much about baked goods? You don’t want to crumble the butter into nothing – think of peas scattered among crumbs.
In a separate bowl, beat the eggs, and add the milk and the maple syrup and the cranberries. Stir the liquid into the butter-flour mix, and press gently to form a dough. When the dough is a single mass that holds together well, turn it out onto a floured surface, and cut into four equal pieces. Form rounds of each quarter, and cut each quarter further into four pieces, making sixteen scones in total.
Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet for 15 to 18 minutes, until puffed and golden. Cool on a wire rack, but eat warm, slathered in butter and drizzled with a bit of maple syrup. Good morning, and happy holidays!