For a blog with ‘scones’ in the title, it sure did take a while for us to get a scone recipe! A flaky, buttery scone is dotted with fresh blueberries and brushed with cream for a crisp finish. A sweet-tart lemon glaze adds brightness that takes these scones over the top. Best served fresh from the oven, these are sure to be a hit at your next brunch or office breakfast!
Hi! I’ve been away, I realize. I’m deeply sorry. But, I’m back! And I thought I’d fill you in on this little life of mine, which surprisingly consists of more than just spinning around my kitchen, whisk in hand, belting out Country Hits of the 1990s.
Things I’ve been doing while I’ve been ignoring this little blog that I love so much:
– Gallivanting around the Grand Canyon with my wonderful roommate, Lexi.
– Helping my dearest guy pals move into their new apartment, in exchange for tequila that I have yet to receive.
– Spending my Sundays drinking at new-to-me bars in the interest of preserving the sanctity of ‘Sunday Funday.’
– Getting locked out of my house at inopportune times, such as when I am drunkenly returning from a date at 11 PM (in monsoon rains, natch).
That last part is what propelled me to get back into writing here on Scones & Patron, some 30,000 feet above the mountains of Colorado, on my return flight from Arizona to DC. More specifically, I was thinking about why I started this blog. It’s a story that I haven’t been emotionally ready to share until now, after traversing the mountains of the Grand Canyon and feeling the burn of strength in my legs and lungs. After crying tears of joy and love at the Canyon’s edge and knowing that I’ve finally overcome what’s burdened me for the last eight months.
After my sexual assault in January, I was lost. My life as I knew it – safe, carefree, bright – was nowhere to be found. I tried to find it, I did! I still went out, I still dated, I made it to the gym every day. But I couldn’t tell anyone about what happened. I wasn’t even fully willing to admit it to myself. In my mind, that would let him win.
I remember standing as still as I could on the Metro on my way to the office one morning, terrified of making a scene, but grateful that no one seemed to notice my uncontrollable shuddering. Then again, it’s the nation’s capital – far stranger things have happened than a girl on the Metro biting her tongue until it bleeds to keep herself from sobbing. No one gave me a second look when I raced out the train doors as soon as they opened. No one said anything when I lost it on the platform, crying into the stale air of the tunnel. I was happy to be ignored, to keep my secret for one more day.
Even sleep, my unfailing palace of comfort, was unsafe. The nightmares came so frequently and with such intensity that the guy I began dating would need to wake me up to let me know that it was only a dream. I covered with excuses: nightmares about robberies, about falling. I never told him the truth, instead keeping it to myself as some sort of twisted security blanket.
Baking was the only place where I felt safe. The steady, methodic processes, the ability to sing and dance like no one was watching, the smiles on the faces of taste testers – it made me smile. Really, genuinely, smile. The brighter the creation, the happier I felt. When I started this blog, the ability to share my stories and find a like-minded community opened me up even more.
In the ensuing months, I’ve moved to a new house, been a Maid of Honor, hiked muddy mountains in the Amazon Rainforest, traveled extensively for work and for pleasure, tried my hand at stand-up comedy, and pushed myself to my limits at every opportunity. I am finally able to tell the truth, to say out loud that I was raped, and to help those who have been in similar situations. The statistics are staggering, and they need to change. No one should have to go through this kind of emotional turmoil, the kind that can break even the sunniest of people down into a quivering mess.
At the end of the day, the world is big. Humans are kind. I am granted a fresh start to be who I am every day. Every single day. And really, there’s nothing more hopeful than that.
These scones are bright, fresh, and comforting. They are for anyone who has ever worn themselves down, blaming themselves for actions that were out of their control. They are for the end of a dark night, and the beginning of a beautiful morning.
Blueberry Scones with Lemon Glaze
To make these scones, you will need:
– 2.5 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
– 1/2 t cinnamon
– 1 t baking powder
– 1/4 t baking soda
– 1/2 t salt
– 3 T granulated sugar
– 5 T unsalted butter, cold, grated
– 1/2 cup sour cream
– 1/2 cup heavy cream
– 1 t vanilla extract
– 1 cup fresh blueberries, rinsed
First, preheat your oven to 400F and line a baking sheet with Silpat or parchment paper. Set aside.
Next, you’ll sift together your flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and baking powder in a large bowl. Set this aside.
Now, the most fun part of the whole process, in my opinion! Take your butter, cold and straight from the fridge, and run it through a cheese grater. You could also dice it, but I find the smaller the butter pieces, the flakier your final product – and flaky is definitely a good thing (except in cases of people and dandruff). Once you’ve grated the butter, cut it into your dry mixture using a pastry cutter, or two forks, or your fingers. You want the largest pieces of butter to be about pea-sized. Once you’ve finished working in the butter, set this mixture aside.
In a separate, small bowl, whisk together your heavy cream and vanilla extract until fully combined. Whisk in the sour cream until the mixture is uniform. Create a well in the center of the dry mixture, then pour your wet mixture into the well. Fold this mixture together just until combined, being careful not to over-mix – the last thing you want is a tough scone! Finally, fold the blueberries into the mixture.
Now it’s time to get down and dirty. Using your hands, form the dough into a ball. Flour your work surface* and turn the dough onto it. Grab a rolling pin and gently flatten the scone dough into a squircle (do people still say this? Did anyone ever say this? Do you understand me???) about one inch thick.
*I used a cutting board, so as to avoid my roommates yelling at me for coating our brand new kitchen counter in flour (again).
Cut the scone dough into eighths to create smaller triangles of dough (as I did), or sixths if your party is especially hungry for some hearty scones. I used a pizza cutter to get the job done, but a knife or pastry cutter would also work great!
Gently separate the scones and arrange them artfully on your lined baking sheet. Using a pastry brush, brush a layer of heavy cream over the top of each scone. This will help them form a nice, golden-brown finish in the oven. You can also sprinkle some raw (turbinado) sugar over top of the scones, if you have it!
Pop the scones in your preheated oven and bake for 16 minutes, or until golden. Mmmmm they look (and smell!) so good! All that’s left now is the glaze.
For the glaze, you will need:
– 1 lemon (zested and juiced)
– 1 T unsalted butter
– ¾ cup powdered sugar
In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter with the lemon juice and zest. Once the butter has melted, remove from heat. Whisk in the powdered sugar, adding more until you reach your desired sweetness and texture. Pour the glaze over the scones, and devour!
The brightness of the lemon, the pop of the fresh blueberries, the flakiness of the warm scone – what more could you ask for?