Monday, April 2, 2012

Apricot Oatmeal Scones

When Mimi Jr. first told me how much she loved this recipe, I have to admit, I was a little skeptical, especially since the recipe called for rolled oats. When I think scones, I think light and delicate, and in my mind, oatmeal just doesn't fit into that equation. Since Mimi Jr. loved these so much, I decided to try them for myself. And I'm glad I did. They turned out with the perfect balance of delicate flaky layers and toasty oat flavor, with a texture just hearty enough to satisfy, without being dense or heavy. 

Scones are a great breakfast treat because they can be shaped and frozen, then baked straight from the freezer either for a quick, warm breakfast, or to feed a crowd with minimal effort (for these scones, just increase the baking time to 25-30 min). While we do love our traditional orange zest scones, these are quickly becoming another family favorite, and we all like to know that there is a bag of ready to bake scones in the freezer whenever the craving strikes.

Apricot Oatmeal Scones
adapted from The America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook

1 1/2 cups old fashion rolled oats
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup heavy cream (you can use 1/2 cup 1/2 & 1/2 instead of the milk and cream)
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar, plus more for sprinkling on the top of the scones
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
10 tablespoons unsalted butter (5 ounces) cut into small dice
1/2 cup chopped dried apricots.

1. Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Spread the oats out over a baking sheet and toast in the oven until lightly browned, about 8 minutes. Let cool. Measure out 2 tablespoons of the toasted oats for dusting the counter.
2. Increase the oven heat to 450 degree F. Whisk the milk, cream, egg, almond and vanilla extracts together in a large measuring cup. Reserve 1 tablespoon for brushing the tops of the scones.
3. Pulse the flour sugar, baking powder and salt in the food processor until combined. Scatter the butter evenly over the top and process until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal, 12-14 pulses.
4.Transfer the flour mixture to a medium mixing bowl and stir in the cooled oats and the apricots. Fold in the milk mixture using a rubber spatula until large clumps form.  Gently knead the mixture in the bowl with your hands until the dough forms a cohesive mass.
5. Dust the counter with half of the the reserved oats. Turn the dough out onto the counter and dust the top with the remaining oats. Gently pat the dough into a 7 inch circle about 1 inch thick. Cut the dough into eight wedges and place on baking sheet lined with a slipat or parchment paper. Brush the tops with reserved milk mixture and sprinkle with sugar.
6. Bake until golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes let cool and serve.

printable recipe

Links: Foodie Friday