Crumbly but moist cream Lemon Cranberry Scones flavored with Meyer lemons and cranberries for a sweet and tart breakfast or afternoon treat.
Does anyone else ever do this? Sometimes I use our supermarket next door as an ATM machine. We don't have a branch of our bank in our immediate neighborhood, but there is a supermarket literally right next to our building.
And the great part is that they give cash backs when you pay with your debit card. So whenever I find myself in need of some cash and don't want to get into the car, I just find something to get from the grocery store.
A few weeks ago, I was in that same situation, but we had just done grocery shopping and for once, there was nothing I needed for a new recipe I was working on. Strolling the produce aisle, looking for something to buy, this bag of ripe and plump, yellow-orange Meyer lemons begged for my attention.
Using My Meyer Lemons For These Citrus Scone Treats
I had heard of this lemon variety before, but never tried it. So it was settled. The Meyer lemons were coming with me and I could get some cash at the check out. It was a win-win.
And then, well, life happened, and this bag of lemons was just sitting and sitting in our fruit tray. I couldn't think of anything to make with them. And then, I thought of my Strawberry Margarita Scones and decided to make another citrus scone version. Deal!
To be more seasonally appropriate, as well as to underline the sweet-tart flavor of the Meyer lemons, I added cranberries as a fruit mix-in. I used dried cranberries, but if you like it very tart, you could also use fresh ones.
Lemon-y Goodness With a Hint of Holidays
Unlike regular lemons, the tartness of Meyer lemons is toned down with a hint of orange-y sweetness. They are thought to be a cross of lemons and mandarins or oranges. Like mandarins, Meyer lemons' main season is in the winter.
In these scones, there is Meyer lemon juice and zest. And even the glaze uses both zest and juice.
In combination with the cranberries, the flavors remind me of the Christmas morning muffins I used to make years ago. Those were made with orange juice, cranberries and cinnamon. Mmm...maybe this year we will have Christmas morning Lemon Cranberry scones? Food for thought. Literally. Hmm. To be continued...
Meyer Lemon Cranberry Scones
- 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup butter
- 2 eggs beaten
- ⅓ cup half & half cream or milk
- 1 tablespoon Meyer lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon Meyer lemon juice
- ¾ cup dried cranberries or fresh if you prefer more tartness
- ½ cup icing sugar
- ½ teaspoon Meyer lemon zest
- 2 teaspoons Meyer lemon juice
- a little half & half or milk, as needed
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Whisk together flour, baking powder, granulated sugar and salt. Using a pastry blender or fork cut in butter until small crumbs form. Stir in eggs, half & half, Meyer lemon juice and zest to make a stiff dough.
- Lightly flour a surface and turn out dough. Add cranberries and fold over dough a couple of times until it holds together. Divide in half and shape into flat disks. Cut each disk into quarters (or 6 pieces for small scones) and place on a lined baking sheet.
- Bake for 15 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack.
- To prepare glaze stir together icing sugar with Meyer lemon zest and juice. Add a few drops of half & half cream as needed to reach drizzling consistency. Place wire rack on a baking tray or parchment paper for easier clean up. Drizzle glaze over scones in a zigzag pattern.
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The key to moist scones lies in the balance of ingredients and the baking process. Using the right amount of fat, such as butter or cream, is essential. Additionally, handling the dough gently and not overworking it helps retain moisture.
Eggs serve as a binding agent and contribute to the overall texture of the scones, providing structure and stability. They also add richness and contribute to the moistness of the scones.
To ensure your Lemon Cranberry Scones rise and are fluffy, it's important to use fresh baking powder to help with leavening. Additionally, handle the dough delicately and avoid overmixing to prevent the scones from becoming tough and dense.
Scones might not turn out fluffy if the dough is overworked, resulting in gluten development, which can make the texture tough. Additionally, using old or insufficient leavening agents, such as baking powder, can cause the scones to not rise properly. Keeping these factors in mind can help ensure your scones turn out light and fluffy.