Culinary SOS: I say, these Cornish scones are brilliant
Dear SOS: I just returned from a lovely stay at the Savoy Hotel in London. For tea, we had the most wonderful scones that I have ever had. Do you think the pastry chef would share the recipe? -- Suzanne Cole, Los Angeles
Dear Suzanne: These adorable scones, delicate, flaky and not overly sweet, may look small, but they pack a lot of flavor. Buttermilk lends a subtle tang, enhancing the richness of the egg and butter, and a bit of dried or candied fruit adds a nice surprise with every bite. A little taste of Britain right here at home.
The Savoy's Cornish Scones
Makes about 2 dozen scones, depending on the size. Total time: 1 hour. Adapted from the Savoy Hotel in London.
4 1/4 cups flour
2 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon plus 1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar
6 tablespoons butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons buttermilk
Prepared egg wash (1 to 2 eggs beaten with a tablespoon of water)
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons dried fruit, such as sultanas, raisins, currant or diced candied orange or lemon
HEAT the oven to 375°. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Cut in the butter to give the mixture a sandy texture.
POUR over the eggs and buttermilk, and stir until incorporated; the dough will be crumbly and look dry. Continue to stir or knead it to form a cohesive dough.
ADD the dried fruit, kneading it in the bowl to evenly incorporate it into the dough.
ROLL the dough out on a lightly floured surface to 3/4-inch thick. Cut the dough into rounds using a small circular cutter (about 1 1/4 inches in diameter).
PLACE the scones on parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing them about 1 1/2 inches apart. Brush the tops of the scones with the prepared egg wash once as they are arranged on the sheets, then once more before they go in the oven.
BAKE the scones, 1 sheet at a time, until puffed and golden brown, about 18 minutes. Rotate the sheets halfway through baking for even coloring.
Nutrition information: Per each of 24 scones: 146 calories, 4 grams protein, 25 grams carbohydrates, 1 gram fiber, 4 grams fat, 2 grams saturated fat, 37 milligrams cholesterol, 7 grams sugar, 209 milligrams sodium.