Saturday, April 5, 2008

Dried Cherry Spelt Scones with Chocolate Chips

My favorite alternative to wheat flour is spelt flour. It has a great nutty flavor and can often be more easily tolerated than it's cousin common wheat, amongst those with wheat allergies. I discovered it when I went on my yeast -free diet after I'd added some whole grains back in to my diet. There's an amazing bread I found that is made from just spelt, salt and water (no yeast, sugars, or anything else!). Really good stuff that you might look for in the freezer section of your grocery store.

Ok, I'm just gonna say it. I needed a break from our usual oatmeal breakie. I know, I know...I claimed that I could eat it 3 times a day. Um...most days? ;-)
These scones sounded like a great respite from the bowl of mush. I found a recipe for Cherry Spelt Scones in Bob's Red Mill Baking Book and knew that I'd have to add some of the chocolate chips I had left from making the tofu chocolate pudding. Who doesn't like chocolate and cherries?
This is another first attempt. When I was a kid my dad made scones for us every Sunday breakfast. I don't even hope to come close to his masterful scones. The only reason I feel I can even make an attempt at these is because he's lately admitted to me that he now just buys Krusteez scone mix when he gets the bug to make them these days! Ah good 'ol Krusteez.

I wrote the previous two paragraphs before making these, so here's the update...they were delicious!! Aside from having way too many cherries that is. Too much of a good thing.
I'm rewriting the recipe to include ~1/4 cup as opposed to the original 1/2 cup of cherries. You might even go ahead and use less and chop them up a little too. I found that they made the scones difficult to split without breaking. I loved, loved, loved the spelt in the scones. These were so much easier than I'd built them up to be. :-) Dog, how I love my food processor...
I sure hope you try these!

Dried Cherry Spelt Scones with Chocolate Chips:

2 1/4 cups spelt flour
1 Tbs + 3/4 tsp aluminum-free baking powder (try Rumford)
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
6 Tbs unsalted butter, chilled and diced
~1/4 cup, or less dried tart cherries (try chopping a little)
~1/3 cup chocolate chips (original recipe didn't call for any)
1 egg
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
3 Tbs light brown sugar (I used Sucanat that I bought at the bulk section of our regular grocery store HEB)
Milk, or melted butter for glazing
optional: cinnamon sugar to sprinkle on top after brushing with milk, or butter

Preheat oven to 400.
Lightly oil a baking sheet, or line it with parchment paper.

In a food processor, or large bowl, pulse or whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Pulse or cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Remove to a large bowl if using the food processor and stir in the dried cherries and chocolate (if using).

In another bowl beat together the egg, buttermilk, vanilla, and brown sugar (or evap. cane juice), then stir it into the flour mixture until a dough forms.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead 8-9 times. Pat the dough into a 1/2 inch thick round, brush with milk, or melted butter, and cut into 6 or 8 wedges. Next time I make these, to counteract the crumbly nature of the spelt, I'm going to halve the dough and make two 1/2 inch thick rounds. Smaller scones might be easier to split and butter without them falling apart. Cooking time might vary if you try this smaller size...will update when I try it.

Place the scones on the prepared pan and bake for 15-16 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack and serve warm, or at room temperature.


Mike said...

Mmmm... I want one with my coffee tomorrow morning.

Beth said...

OK, I know you'll never believe me, I didn't see Mike's comment, but decided to make these today as I was heading to the grocery store!!! Freaky!!!

When I saw your aluminum-free baking powder I was stunned. I never knew they added aluminum, but sounds like a bad idea. I also found AL-free baking soda. Mike looked it up while I was making them and found that the AL is added to slow the reaction. So, wait to add the liquid until you're ready to rumble if you're cooking with AL-free leavening agents.

We had these for dessert after the fish stew (see my comment there for more details on that). They were pretty yummy despite tasting healthy (for scones). I couldn't find real dark chocolate chips, but I'm sure that would make them taste even better.

Alex said...

Great Easy recipe! I love the light and fluffy texture. I didn't use chocolate chips but they turned out pretty well. Thanks!