Bergamot Scones

Lisa very, very kindly has sent me a new batch of bergamots! I have a lot of plans for these guys. Perhaps too many plans, since I might actually need a tree of my very own to have enough fruit to make as much stuff as I'm interested in. But I'm going to roll through as much of my list (which I'm keeping a surprise!) as I can, so we all have new ways to play with bergamot. So, feel no surprise if you see nothing BUT bergamot from me for a little bit. This only happens once a year, so I figure y'all can be entertained by it instead of annoyed. Also, feel free to make any of these recipes with another citrus fruit than bergamot. Y'all should also expect to see a lot of adapted pastry recipes, because pastry is what I'm particularly interested in right now. Which is kind of weird, considering I don't have much of a sweet tooth.

The original scone recipe I adapted this from can be found here, at Rock Recipes. The original recipe has raisins in it, and stuff like that. But I changed it about so it'd fit what I wanted for the bergamot I was using in it. I think this particular scone recipe would be lovely done up with Meyer lemon, also. Or even sweet lemon would be quite nice.

3 cups flour
2/3 cups white sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
zest of one bergamot, finely grated

3/4 cup cold or frozen butter, diced into cubes or sliced (I sliced mine, but convention is to cube it)
juice of one bergamot orange
1 cup cream

In a food processor, pulse the first set of ingredients (you can do this with a pastry blender or two knives, if you prefer. But I am lazy and like to make my scones in the processor, especially when I'm engaging in 5am insomnia baking). Toss in the butter and pulse again until you've got pea sized bits of flour in there (just like when you make pie crust). Add in the bergamot juice and the cream, and pulse again until the dough is starting to combine but it not very well combined. This is important because scones should never be tough. Tough scones ruin breakfasts and make people cry. And we all know making people cry is not a very nice thing to do.

Onto a well-floured board, turn out dough. There will be bits of dough all over your board. This is okay, and is expected. Flour your hands really well, and the top of the dough in as much as you can. Start pushing the dough together into a really big disk with your floured hands (reflour as needed; the dough is quite sticky), patting it to 1 inch thickness as you go. Using a cup or biscuit cutter, cut rounds from the dough and put on a sheet pan that's lined either will a Silpat or parchment. Leave about 2" space between each scone disk. When your disk is used up, repress the scraps together and cut again. You want to do this repressing (I feel like I'm stopping the dough from doing what it wants when I type repress in) with as little flour as possible so you don't make them tough, and you don't want to work the dough very much. But you also don't want to waste it, so this is a good way to not waste dough.

Once all your scones are on sheet trays (should take 2 unless you're making them really big, and then I guess even then it'll take two pans), freeze or refrigerate the trays. If you put them in the freezer, leave them there for an hour, then take them out, put them in a freezer-safe container or bag, and put back in the freezer. You can bake them straight from the freezer by simply adding another 2-3 minutes to the bake time (I did this with about half of them). If you put them in the fridge, take them out after an hour, sprinkle a little sugar on top, and put them straight into a preheat, 375F oven for about 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown on top. This should make about 16 reasonably sized scones (I used a 1.5 inch diameter cutter, I think).


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