- Yield 6 pieces
The crumbly Scottish biscuit is a perfect complement to strong, hot tea.
According to The King Arthur Flour Cookbook, the name of this delicious relative of a biscuit is probably derived from the Gaelic sgonn, because scones are believed to have originated in Scotland. And Scone, Scotland, was the capital of a powerful kingdom in the Middle Ages. The ancient sgonns consisted merely of oat or barley flour, plus a bit of water, fried on a griddle.
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup sugar, plus extra for decorating tops of scones
- 2 teaspoons grated orange peel (optional)
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 egg
- Orange juice (as needed)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and 1/4 cup sugar, plus the orange peel, if desired. Stir in cranberries. Cut in butter with knives or a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Put egg in a large measuring cup, and add enough orange juice to raise the level of liquid to 1/2 cup. Add vanilla and beat lightly. Pour into dry mixture, and stir just until blended.
- Turn dough onto a floured board, and (using floured hands) knead the mixture gently 8 to 10 times. Gently shape dough into a circle, and cut it into six pie-shaped wedges.
- Place scones on a greased cookie sheet, and sprinkle tops with additional sugar. Bake for 12 minutes, checking halfway through; if the bottoms appear brown, reduce heat to 400 degrees for remaining 6 minutes.