Morning times go by so fast for us that I am hardly ever able to make time for a breakfast that requires more effort than microwaving, toasting, scrambling eggs, or stirring together ready-made waffle pancake mixes… and there’s my morning secret.
But for this past week, I’ve wanted to challenge my regular morning cooking ritual, to infuse it with something different.
I found a recipe for “The Best Blackberry Scones,” and to my disappointment, it was anything but “the best.” So, on my search for a better recipe, I finally devised one myself and the results delivered.
I got the kids involved as well, using ice cream scoops as the bait.
If you don’t have time in the morning, make them the night before, and freeze them either on the baking sheet or in an airtight container, so you just have to transfer them to the oven. We love make-ahead meals and this just adds a simple baking component.
These would also be delicious slathered with a bit of homemade lemon curd!
Cooking by the Numbers…
Step 1 – Prepare the Ingredients
Using an electric spice grinder or a blade type coffee grinder, grind the nutmeg into a fine powder. One whole nutmeg will make about half a teaspoon.
I like using freshly ground nutmeg rather than the dried powdered kind – the taste of nutmeg is what sets this recipe apart. But feel free to use the powdered kind if that is all you have. I’d add a smidge more. Maybe 3/4 of a teaspoon.
Step 2 – Preheat and Ready the Cookie Sheet
Make sure the rack is positioned in the center of the oven. Spray down a nonstick cookie sheet with Pam or a generic aerosol oil, or line it with parchment paper or a silicone and fiberglass baking sheet liner such as a Silpat.
Step 3 – Mix the Ingredients
Mix the egg and buttermilk; a large liquid measuring cup works perfectly for this.
Quickly rub the butter into the dry ingredients until it is pebbly.
Slowly pour the egg and buttermilk mixture over the dry ingredients and chop together with a fork or two knives. A pastry blender would work as well, if you have one. DON’T OVERMIX!. You just want the dough to become wet and stick together.
Add the berries and again – stir just enough to incorporate the fruit. Over stirring/mixing can encourage the development of gluten strands and make your scones chewy – not the consistency we are looking for. We want slightly “crumbly.”
Lightly knead the dough by hand to better incorporate the material. As previously stated – don’t overdo this. We want the scones to be able to stick together but be a bit crumbly when done. Too much kneading and you will have chewy bread.
Step 4 – Portion Out and Bake
Use a small ice cream scoop to portion out 16 to 18 scone dough balls onto your oiled pan or parchment paper.
At this point, the scones can be frozen on the baking sheet, then wrapped airtight. Don’t defrost before baking, just add about 2 more minutes to the baking time.
Stick in the oven or toaster oven and bake for 20 to 22 minutes. The tops should be firm and you can use the “toothpick test” to check for doneness.
Step 5 – Cool and Top
Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes prior to serving. If desired, you can drizzle them with some glaze. I used our spiced glaze recipe to top these.
You can also top with fresh berries. I find that tartness of the fresh berries is really great in offsetting the sweetness of the scones, especially if they are glazed.
One last thing. These turned out a bit flatter than I was hoping for. If you reduce the fruit by half they should be plumper. But we like fruit and the taste was incredible as is!
Serve them up with fresh coffee brewed in a French press and voila!
If you love blackberries, and want another recipe that features this juicy fruit, try our refreshing blackberry and lemon cocktails, perfect for serving during warm weather gatherings!
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Photos by Mike Quinn, © Foodal / Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published June 11th, 2014 by Lynne Jaques. Revised and updated October 16th, 2017, with additional writing and editing by Mike Quinn.
*Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.
About Lynne Jaques
Lynne is a stay-at-home mother of two boys. As a former US military officer and the spouse of an active duty US military member, Lynne enjoys traveling the world (although not the moving part!) and finding new cuisine and methods of preparing food. She also has the habit of using parenthesis way too much!