I may not be famous, but I can claim minor celebrity among my friends, family and former co-workers for one thing - my scones. It started with a Sunset Bread Cookbook given to me 50 years ago at a bridal shower. On the last page was a recipe for cream scones. One day I didn't have the heavy cream called for, so I substituted yogurt. Voila! The resulting product was light and delicious, a distinct improvement. I began making them frequently, often taking a batch into the office to the delight of my colleagues. The basic recipe is wonderful all on its own with jam, but I often add ingredients such as dried cranberries, dried apricots or pears, and/or chocolate chips.
When I announced my retirement from the Nemours Fund for Children's Health, I honestly thought my office mates were going to cry because there would be no more scones. Houseguests have come to expect them. When my daughter Hannah hosts a brunch, I bring a double batch. Recently, I had my daughters, their friends and little girls over for a breakfast while we watched the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Scones were one of the featured menu items, of course, since it was a British event. In fact, years ago, when Prince Charles and Diana wed, I invited my next door neighbor to join me and the girls for tea and scones. So here's the recipe, easy to make and ready to slide into the oven in about the same time it takes for it to preheat.
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar
½ teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons butter, cut in chunks (do not substitute margarine)
2 eggs (separate one and reserve the white) beaten
1/3 cup plain, lemon, or vanilla yogurt
Sugar for topping
Place all dry ingredients in bowl of food processor. Add butter and pulse for a minute. Then add egg and egg yolk, yogurt and pulse until dough just begins to come together in clumps. Do not overmix. Turn out onto floured surface and gently knead in ½ cup or more of raisins or other dried fruit. Nuts or chocolate chips can also be added. You may want to add ½ t. of vanilla, almond, or lemon extract, as well as cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg or other flavorings, such as lemon or orange zest. Take the ball of dough and divide in half. Flatten each half into a disk. Cut each disk into four pieces (or eight for mini-scones). Beat the remaining egg white with a fork and brush onto the top of each scone. Put some sugar on a plate and lightly press the scone wet side down into the sugar. Place on an ungreased baking sheet.
Bake in a 400 degree oven for about 15 minutes or until golden brown. These are best eaten immediately. Freeze leftovers and enjoy another day.
Note: if you do not have a food processor, use a pastry blender to cut the butter into the dry ingredients until the butter is in very small pieces (less than the size of a pea). Then proceed with the rest of the recipe.
I'm Chris Barabasz, retired from a 35-year career managing communications for health care development (that's fundraising for you civilians). I'm a wife, mother, grandmother and freelance writer. My husband Andy and I moved from Delaware to Texas to be closer to our daughters and three adorable grandchildren.