Every once in awhile, I decide I’m only going to do things that are awesome. And I forget that even with superhuman optimism, a lot of things aren’t awesome, and you can’t forgo invoicing and homework and laundry in favour of making things or playing with new projects on the internet.
But I have stuck to my new rule of only eating baked goods that are awesome – life is too short for bad bread. Right? And although I do enjoy a good muffin/scone/cookie/cinnamon bun any time of year, there’s something about cooling weather and crunchy leaves that demands something freshly baked alongside your coffee or tea.
(Related: no kitchen yet. It’s moving at glacial speed. But I have a sink! Update soon.)
Eons ago, I got to the point where I could mix up a batch of scones from memory, knowing just how much flour/sugar/baking powder/butter/cream would yield a perfect carb vehicle for anything from berries to chocolate chunks. A scone truly is the ultimate blank canvas; if you have the basics on hand, you can wing the rest. They take tasty care of squishy fruit and cheese ends, and scraps of things that might not otherwise add up to much. And even if a rummage through the fridge results in no more than a bottle of gin and maple syrup, you can make maple scones. (Or gin scones?)
Even though maple syrup runs in the spring, it feels like fall to me. I wish I had seen Joy’s apple pie biscuits before I made these – next time I’ll envelop sugared, spiced apples in maple dough and splatter maple drizzle over them, Jackson Pollock-style. I may go do that now.
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup cold butter, cut into pieces
3/4 cup half & half
2 Tbsp. pure maple syrup
1/2 cup icing sugar
1 Tbsp. maple syrup
1 Tbsp. half & half
Preheat the oven to 425F.
In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, brown sugar, baking powder and salt. Add the butter and blend it in with a pastry blender, fork or your fingers until well combined, with lumps of butter the size of a pea remaining.
Add the half & half and maple syrup and stir just until the dough comes together. Turn out onto a parchment-lined sheet and pat into a circle an inch thick. Cut into 6-8 wedges and pull them apart on the sheet. If you like, brush them with a little extra milk and sprinkle with sugar.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden. Meanwhile, whisk together the icing sugar, maple syrup and cream, and drizzle it over the warm scones with a fork. Makes 6-8 scones.