When I decided I wanted to start doing recipes on my blog, I knew I had to start with scones! I absolutely love scones and every time I serve them up at a brunch party I’m hosting, everyone always feels like they’re getting a special treat.
Most people enjoy them and love picking them up at their local coffee house, but have you ever thought of making them at home? Scones are actually quite simple to make. Imagine baking up a batch of scones for your next Sunday brunch, or for inviting guests over for coffee or tea? Or, even just to have a scone to take with you to work every day?
I think scones are a bit mysterious because something about them seems a bit fancy despite their simple exterior. Perhaps it’s the name that renders them rather posh? Or perhaps it’s because we know that scones are served at a traditional English tea?
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A Brief History of Scones
Although many of us associate scones to be an English treat, some sources indicate that they actually originated in Scotland in the 1500s and then made popular in England by Anna, the Duchess of Bedford, in the 1800s.
The funny thing is that English scones
My Inspiration for this Scone
Now that summer’s here, I’m always delighted when I see all the beautiful fruit everywhere I go!
Lately, I’ve been in a scone baking kinda mood and I’ve been wanting to try many different variations of scones.
I was inspired by all the pretty fruit I brought home last week and wanted to try a completely unique scone. The most common types of scones include berries, chocolate chips, raisins, spices, and even herbs and cheeses. But, I have yet to come across a scone with Apricots inside. Apricots are so delicious and they’re not something you would expect to find inside a typical scone. I also decided that I would make a delicious Blackberry Orange Honey butter to top this scone with and the combination is absolutely divine!
Tip for the Best Fruit Flavor
The best way to make sure that the apricots have the best flavor is to leave them out on the kitchen countertop to ripen for a few days before eating/using in baking. The aroma that develops is absolutely incredible! In most cases, the flavor of refrigerated fruit doesn’t compare at all to the flavor of the fruit that has been left out at room temperature for a few days.
The apricots I used for this recipe were semi-ripe (but still aromatic) because I wanted the apricots to hold their shape without getting too mushy. This made them the perfect texture inside the scone. But, you can always try using very ripe apricots if that’s what you prefer.
Berries on the other hand, should be placed in the fridge unless you’re going to be using/eating them the same day as they will spoil very quickly.
Can I use dried apricots instead of fresh apricots?
One of my readers asked if they could use dried apricots instead of fresh apricots in this recipe. Yes, you can! Just in case you can’t get your hands on fresh apricots, or if want to bake these up all year round at times when apricots are not in season, you can always use dried apricots!
Tips for using dried apricots in this recipe:
- Place about 10 dried apricots in a small heat-proof bowl.
- Add boiling water over dried apricots enough to cover them by about two inches.
- Let the dried apricots steep for about 10-15 minutes or until they have become nice and plump.
- Strain the apricots to get out all of the water and pat them dry with a paper towel.
- Chop apricots into desired sized chunks and add them into the dough mixture along with the blackberries.
I always like to prep my ingredients to ensure that I don’t forget to add something in.
What’s the Key to a Flakey and Delicate Scone?
COLD, COLD BUTTER!!!
Having cold butter is one of the most important steps to remember anytime you want to bake scones. Without cold butter, your scones will not be flakey.
Quick Tips for the Best Scones
- When you’re dicing up the butter, the warmth from your hands might
makethe butter start melting very quickly. That’s why I recommend you pop the butter into the freezer or the refrigerator for about 10 minutes before you add it to the flour mixture to ensure that the butter is extra cold.
- Don’t over-mix the dough
- If the dough gets warm, put it into the fridge for about 20-30 minutes for it to get cold.
- Don’t knead the dough and don’t roll it out too much.
Mix Dry Ingredients First
Add all of your dry ingredients into the bowl and blend until the dry ingredients are evenly combined. If you don’t have a stand mixer, you can use either a pastry cutter, two forks or your hands. However, it’s going to take longer to incorporate all of the ingredients and you risk over-mixing the dough which will make the dough dense and not flakey.
Add Cold Butter
Take the butter out of the freezer or refrigerator and add the very cold butter to the flour mixture. Blend until the mixture looks very crumbly and resembles the size of small peas.
Mix the Wet Ingredients
Rather than adding the wet ingredients in one at a time, it’s easier to combine all of the wet ingredients (including orange zest) into a liquid measuring cup and beat lightly to combine.
Then pour the wet ingredients into the dry flour and butter mixture.
Be sure not to over mix the dough. Over mixing the dough will activate the gluten in the flour and give you a dense dough. You also want to make sure the butter doesn’t get over mixed. There should still be small chunks of butter. Butter has fat and water in it. When you pop the scone dough into the oven, the water turns into steam which makes the butter melt. This is what makes the scones extra flakey.
If you look closely, you can see the small chunks of butter.
Once the dry and wet ingredients have been mixed together, it’s time to add in the fruit. You just need to mix in the fruit until evenly combined. You can do this part by hand or in the mixer. Don’t worry if the berries break and leak their juice all over the dough. This is normal. I prefer to have big chunks of berries, so I barely mixed in the fruit.
When the apricots and blackberries have been mixed in, it’s time to turn out the dough onto a generously floured surface. Press the dough together with your hands.
Using a floured rolling pin, roll the dough out just until it has reached a thickness of about 1/2 inch. You can make them thicker or thinner depending on your preference and how much you want to make.
What Shape Should Scones Be?
I wanted a very rustic country look to these scones so I cut them using a knife instead of a
For this scone, I rolled out the dough into more of an oval shape, then I cut the dough roughly into squares. Then I cut each square in half on a diagonal to make triangles. As you can see, I didn’t put any effort into trimming the edges and making it look even since I was going for a rustic home-made look.
To ensure that the dough is extra cold, once I’ve cut out the scones and put them on the baking sheet, I like to put them in the fridge for about 15 minutes so that all of the ingredients in the dough can be cold. You don’t have to do this step, but it’s just something I like to do.
Brush the scones with heavy cream before sprinkling with course sugar and before putting them in the oven.
If you don’t have any heavy cream left, you can make a quick egg-wash using one egg yolk mixed with a Tablespoon of water.
Bake for about 15 minutes or just until golden brown on the bottom. The top part of the scone doesn’t have to be golden brown, but this is personal preference. I slightly over-baked these scones, but they still came out perfect.
Click here for the Blackberry Orange Honey Butter recipe topped onto this scone
- 4 Cups Flour
- 4 Eggs (lightly beaten)
- 2 Sticks Very Cold Unsalted Butter diced into small cubes
- 1/4 Cup Heavy Cream plus a 1/4 cup set aside for brushing on top of scones
- 1/4 Cup Buttermilk
- 1/2 Cup Sugar
- 2 Tablespoons Baking Powder
- 1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
- 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 1 Cup Apricot cut into small pieces
- 1 Cup Blackberries
- Zest of 1 orange (optional)
- 1/4 Cup Coarse Sugar (optional)
- 1/2 Cup Powdered Sugar (optional)
- Pre-heat oven to 400F (190C). Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- Add flour, sugar, kosher salt and baking powder into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and blend on low speed until just combined.
- Add the very cold butter to the dry mixture and blend on low speed just until the butter is mixed in. The mixture will be lumpy and will resemble small pea-sized chunks.
- Combine cream, buttermilk, eggs, vanilla and orange zest together in a small bowl, lightly mix and then slowy add them to the flour and butter mixture. Blend on low speed until the ingredients are combined. Be sure not to over mix the dough. The mixture will be sticky.
- Add Blackberries and Apricots to the rest of the ingredients and mix until just combined and evenly distributed.
- Turn dough out onto a heavily floured surface. Flour a rolling pin and both of your hands so that the dough doesn't stick to your hands and the rolling pin and gently begin rolling out the dough until it's about 1 inch thick or slightly less.
- Using either a cookie-cutter or a knife, cut into any shape you like.
- Place each scone on the prepared sheet with parchment paper.
- Brush each scone with heavy cream and top with clear sugar sprinkles or course sugar and pop them into the oven for about 15 minutes or until they start to get a little golden.
- Once scones have slightly cooled on the baking sheet, transfer to a wire rack so that they can cool completely.
- Dust with powdered sugar (optional)
- If you don't have an electric mixer, you can use a large bowl and pastry cutter to cut the butter into the flour mixture. If you don't have a pastry cutter, you can just use your hands, but be sure not to over mix the dough.
- If you don't want to add the Buttermilk, you can just add 1/2 cup of heavy cream instead.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 447 Total Fat: 22g Saturated Fat: 12g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 9g Cholesterol: 109mg Sodium: 554mg Carbohydrates: 55g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 2g Sugar: 12g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 8g
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Love & Hugs,