Saturday, January 21, 2017

Cinnamon Orange Scones

Cinnamon Orange Scones

There's just something dear to my heart and stomach about cinnamon orange baked goods. It started years ago when my husband first introduced me to Pillsbury Orange Rolls with Orange Icing. That magical cinnamon orange poppin' fresh dough seriously enchanted my taste buds. 
My first, and probably still favorite attempt to recreate that enchantment in my own kitchen was with Orange Cinnamon Pull Apart Loaf. Since I didn't want to spend that much time on a yeast dough this morning, though, it made sense to get my Cranberry Orange Scones and my newer Cinnamon Streusel Scones together, and this is the baby they made.
The orange flavor in these scones is outstanding: bright, fresh, sweet; and then the cinnamon flavor just plays a supporting role. The scones are buttery and not super sweet, but still very satisfying. These will surely be made again around here.

Cinnamon Orange Scones

Streusel Ingredients:
Scone Ingredients:
  • 3 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar (rounded)
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) chilled butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup half & half
  • 1 tablespoon orange extract 
Glaze Ingredients (Glaze is optional.) 
  • 1/2 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 to 2  tablespoons orange juice
Instructions: Preheat oven to 375°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. (Parchment isn’t necessary, but it helps.) 
Make the streusel first: Place sugar, flour, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Add the butter and then with your fingers, kneed the butter into the dry ingredients until it is evenly distributed and streusel starts to form small clumps. Set aside.
Now make the scone dough: Sift flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda into large bowl. (By "sift" I mean put the ingredients in a large bowl and stir well with a whisk.)   Stir in the orange zest with a whisk to incorporate (Note: if you plan to do the glaze, reserve about 1/2 teaspoon zest for the glaze). Add butter and cut in with a pastry blender, until mixture resembles coarse meal. It's fine to still have some visible chunks of butter about the size of a used pencil eraser.

Stir the orange extract into the half and half & then add to the dry ingredients, folding with a silicone/rubber spatula until moist clumps form. Turn dough out onto lightly floured work surface. Knead briefly to bind dough, about 4 turns.  Cut ball of dough in half.   
Form dough into two 1/2-inch-thick circles. Spread about half of the streusel onto the surface of one of the circles. Press down lightly. Top with the other circle and press lightly to smoosh them together. Don't press too much though. 
Cut the stacked circle into 6 wedges. Then cut each wedge into four somewhat equal triangles by cutting off the tip and then cutting the back side into three triangles, like so...
Carefully transfer wedges to prepared baking sheets, spacing 2 inches apart.* Sprinkle each with some streusel. Bake at 375°F until scones are golden brown, about 15-18 minutes. (If you're baking one pan at a time, place the waiting pan in the fridge while the first bakes. If you're baking both pans at the same time, swap oven rack levels about 10 minutes into baking. ) Let baked scones stand on baking sheet 10 minutes. Then with a spatula, transfer to a wire rack to cool more. If glazing, stir glaze ingredients together and drizzle a small amount over each scone. Serve scones warm or at room temperature.

*At this point you can transfer cut scones to a plate or small baking sheet covered with wax paper and freeze. When scones are completely frozen, carefully place in a zip top freezer bag and place in freezer until ready to bake at a later date. Just be careful about the layers separating. You may want to consider wrapping the frozen scone dough in groups of 2 or three in wax paper and then placing in the freezer bag. Save streusel in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer.
When you do bake them, top with streusel and follow baking instructions above, adding about 3-5 minutes to the baking time.

Makes 2 dozen little scones

the streusel
orange zest

butter cut in--still some larger bits of butter

Dough is still a bit dry when you turn it out.

ready to be layered


panned and streuseled

Some sliding occurred with this batch. Oops.

1 comment:

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