It's possible that my soon-to-be husband falling in love with me had more than a little something to do with these scones. Without really realizing what I was doing, I won a piece of his heart over with baked goods when we first became friends. Going to hang out with him mid chocolate chip cookie recipe testing and baking the dough at his house. Bringing over scones because I had just made a batch and knew my eating the whole batch myself was a horrible idea. Ever since that first batch, he's been a huge believer that my scones are the best there are. And I think they're pretty great too!
So this recipe comes to you after a few weeks of my babes asking me to make a batch of scones (and my finally remembering to pick up some cream at the store for said scones!). The base of this scone recipe has served me well over the years - specked with freshly harvested wild blackberries and served with lemon curd, made with roasted poblano peppers, bacon, and aged cheddar cheese for a birthday morning treat, made simply with no additions to be served alongside Thanksgiving dinner.
I've been on a chocolate hazelnut kick with the bounty of hazelnuts we're lucky to have in Oregon, so I thought this time around I'd try the recipe in a chocolate hazelnut version, with a bit of whole wheat flour to add a nuttier flavor to the dough - it did not disappoint!
Dairy is of chief importance when you're making scones! It's the cream and butter that make scones the flaky, tender, delicate treat they are - so don't skimp on these things. I like to buy local grass-fed cream from wherever it is I'm living, and I always suggest using european style butter if you can find/afford it. That said, these beauties will come out great no matter what cream and butter you use!
One of the great beauties of scones is their flexibility when it comes to the timeline for making them. While scones are absolutely best right out of the oven, that doesn't mean you have to go through the whole process to have them ready first thing in the morning. This scone dough both refrigerates and freezes beautifully. That means you can make the dough and put the cut scones in the fridge to bake the next morning, of freeze them and bake one or two whenever you're in the mood for a treat!
As I so often do, I encourage you to use this recipe as a guide - adding in whatever scone flavor combinations you can dream up! Just keep the add-ins to about one and a half cups or less.
Chocolate Hazelnut Scones
1.5 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour (you can also use all purpose flour)
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
6oz cold unsalted butter
3/4 cup cream (half and half works as well)
1 cup hazelnuts, dry roasted and chopped
3/4 cup dark chocolate chips
1 egg, beaten
- Combine the dry ingredients (flours, sugar, baking powder, salt) in a wide bowl. Whisk or stir to evenly distribute the ingredients.
- Add the cubes of butter to the dry ingredients, and cut the butter into the flour using a pastry cutter. Alternatively, this can be done with two knives (or a food processor, but I prefer my hands). You want the butter to break down to the point that the largest pieces are about the size of pebbles, as can be seen in the photo above.
- Pour the cold cream into the bowl, and begin to gently stir using a wooden spoon or a silicone spatula.
- When the dough is just starting to come together, add the hazelnuts and chocolate.
- Continue stirring until no flour remains at the bottom of the bowl. Add a little extra cream if needed.
- Dump the mixture out onto a lightly floured surface and use your hands to form it into a round disc, about two inches thick.
- Cut the dough into 8 pieces, then transfer the scones onto a parchment or baking mat lined baking sheet.
- Brush the tops of the scones with the beaten egg.
- Bake at 375 for about 20 minutes, or until the tops are nicely browned. It will take longer if baking from the fridge or freezer.