Put me in a bakery and probably the last thing I would get is a scone. In spite of how it might seem here with all the baked goods on this site, I really do have to be careful about what I eat. If I am going to splurge, it’s not going to be on a scone. Chocolate yes, scone no. I can even “kind of” convince myself that I don’t like scones just like I have “kind of” convinced myself that I don’t like butter on my bread or that I don’t like pie – none of which are true, but for some reason I usually believe myself.
When I actually taste a scone – a good scone, or butter on my bread, or…all right pie for that matter – all that “kind of” convincing goes out the window. The Holly B’s cookbook has several scone recipes so I am going to need to up that willpower a bit. This one features a homemade almond praline and it is that perfect balance of sweet, nutty and buttery that all good scones aspire to. These are very easy to make and they freeze beautifully. Holly says in her book that the extra almond praline tastes great over ice cream and I’m here to tell you that it does. Especially when that ice cream is homemade and is sitting on top of a brownie. Recipe coming soon.
To order Holly B’s cookbook, please visit this site.
Almond Praline Scones
With Love and Butter
2 1/2 cups Almond Praline (recipe follows)
3 3/8 cups (3 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons) flour
3/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) cold butter
6 tbsp. milk
1 tbsp. rum
Preheat the oven to 375°F and place the rack in the center position. Line a large cookie sheet with baking parchment or grease lightly.
In a food processor, rough-chop enough Almond Praline to make 2 1/2 cups and transfer to a large bowl. Return the food processor to the stand without washing and dump in the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, and salt. Pulse once or twice to blend, then slice in the butter. Pulse until the butter is cut into the dry ingredients and the size of pearls or smaller. Scrape the mixture into the bowl with the praline and toss to combine.
Now place the eggs, milk, and rum in the food processor and blend well. Drizzle the wet stuff over the dry stuff in the bowl and stir gently. Toss this mixture lightly with your fingertips to gauge the consistency. If the dough seems too dry and crumbly (won’t hold together when you squeeze some lightly in your hand), add a bit more milk. Mix until fully combined.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and divide into 2 equal parts. Pat each lump of dough into a disk 1 inch thick, dusting with flour if sticky. Cut each disk into 6 wedges.
Space the scones on the baking sheet at least 1 inch apart. Bake 10 minutes, rotate the pan and bake 5 more minutes or until barely brown on top and golden on bottom (check with a metal spatula). Repeat with the remaining scones. Serve with butter.
Makes 3 1/2 cups
2 1/2 cups whole natural almonds
1/2 cup water
1 cup sugar
Caution: Please take care when making praline. Molten sugar will give you a bad burn.
Oil a large heatproof bowl and a large cookie sheet with flavorless oil. Put the almonds in the bowl.
Boil the water and sugar in a shallow saucepan over medium-high heat, scraping down the sides with a wooden spoon, until the mixture turns golden-amber, 10-12 minutes. Don’t worry if the mixture looks white and crunchy at first, just keep going. Once the process starts the mixture will darken rapidly, so watch carefully.
Pour the molten sugar over the almonds and immediuately stir with a woodend spoon (plastic will melt) to coat them thoroughly. Spread the mixture in a thin layer on the oiled cookie sheet and cool completely. Break the praline into pieces and store in a covered container.