sour cream scones / by Maci Britt

Hola. I'm emerging from an unintentional 8 month blogging hiatus to bring you a current favorite recipe for scones! We could all use more scones in our lives, right? I'm a huge fan of them- not the dry and crumbly kind, but the tender and slightly flaky variety. These are those.

They come from The Vanilla Bean Baking Book (which is beautiful, by the way... if you've never read Sarah's blog, pop over there) and I love the folding method used for all of the scones in there. After the scone dough is brought together, it's rolled out and folded into thirds like a letter. This process is repeated a couple of times until it's finally folded into a rectangle, then cut into smaller rectangles, then cut into triangles. I may never pat scone dough into a circle again. 

Anyways, the method is fun and yields wonderful results, but the real star of this recipe (personal opinion) is the sour cream. Sarah uses crème fraîche in her original recipe, which is terrific, but I rarely have it in the fridge and never have the forethought to make my own in advance. So if you want scones on a Monday night as I did, sour cream is the answer! It's just slightly tangier than crème fraîche, but who ever said that was a bad thing? Not me. Most things baked with sour cream are automatically better than anything baked without. 

Final note: Organic strawberry jam is optional but highly recommended here. Have you tried Costco's? It's actually great. 

Happy baking! Maybe I'll be back sometime soon! xo

sour cream scones
recipe lightly adapted from the vanilla bean baking book

[ makes 8 scones ]

2 1/4 cups (320 grams) all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

2 tablespoons sugar, plus extra for sprinkling

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1/2 cup (120 grams) sour cream

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 large egg

12 tablespoons butter, chilled and cut into 1/2" pieces

Heavy cream, for brushing

Preheat oven to 400 degrees, and place a rack in the lower middle position. Stack two baking sheets (this prevents the bottoms of the scones from getting too brown) and line the top sheet with parchment paper. 

Whisk the flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt together in a large bowl. 

Whisk the sour cream, vanilla, and egg together in a small bowl. Set aside. 

Use a pastry cutter to cut the butter into the flour mixture until the butter is well distributed and coated with flour. Most pieces of butter should be about the size of peas. 

Fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients with a spatula until just combined. 

Lightly flour a clean work surface and gently knead the dough about 4 or 5 times until it comes together. Roll into a 12-inch square, and fold into thirds, like a letter. Fold into thirds again to make a square. Chill in the freezer for 10 minutes.

When the dough is cold again, roll into a 12-inch square and fold into thirds. Place the seam side down on the work surface and roll into a 12-inch by 4-inch rectangle. 

Cut the dough in half crosswise, then in half again, to make 4 rectangles. Cut each rectangle in half diagonally to make 8 triangles.

Transfer the scones to the baking sheet, brush the tops lightly with the heavy cream, and sprinkle generously with sugar. 

Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the scones are golden. Rotate the pan halfway through the baking time.

Obviously these are best enjoyed warm, but they are also pretty great the next morning al desko. ;)