ginger pecan scones
Often when I’m typing these posts, I’m singing to myself. These days, it’s generally a mix of Ra Ra Riot, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Cold War Kids and Cloud Cult. Sometimes, when it’s rainy and drab outside, it’s all Bon Iver, and when it’s sunny and warm, it’s Los Campesinos. In any case, the husband likes to surprise me from behind by suddenly applauding at my stellar — read: Terrible — singing, causing me to squeak out the note stuck in my throat with a horrible, piercing sound.
I’d say it’s embarrassing, but I’d be lying. It’s not. Heck, if I didn’t think it’d annoy everyone around my desk at work, I’d do it there, too. But only a few are privy to my vocal talents.
But we’re not here to talk about my singing. We’re here to talk about these Ginger Pecan Scones — or, as I decided to call them after realizing how much they looked like cookies after baking, “scookies.” Let’s see if that catches on.
These scones are delightful because they’re incredibly soft — not crumbly, dense or dry, like most other scones. They’re buttery, and though there’s a hefty dosage of ginger in these guys, the flavor isn’t overpowering at all, and neither are the pecans. There’s an even, mellow medley of both flavors throughout the scone, so you won’t find a random punch of ginger or pecan or butter in any bite. They all work together in harmony. Unlike my singing.
If you want your scones to look a little less cookie-like, I’d suggest adding more flour to the dough until it’s just manageable enough to hold in your hands without sticking to your fingers. But add more flour and you run the risk of these scones getting tough, so the choice is yours. I figure, scookie or scone, as long as they taste good, life is beautiful.
My singing, however — well, that’s a different story.
Adapted from Bon Appetit Magazine
Yields: 12 scones
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2/3 cup plus 1 tbsp sugar
3/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 sticks chilled, unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/3 cup pecan halves, chopped
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp chopped crystallized ginger
1 cup buttermilk
2 tsp finely grated peeled fresh ginger
1 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine flour, 2/3 cup sugar, salt, baking powder, ground ginger and baking soda. Add butter gradually, softening between fingers before blending into batter. Mix until a coarse meal forms. Add pecans and 1/4 cup crystallized ginger. In a separate bowl, whisk most of the buttermilk (leave about 1 tbsp aside for later), grated ginger and vanilla. Form a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in buttermilk mixture. Mix until just combined and the dough is shaggy. Using an ice cream scoop, scoop out a generous amount of dough and place on baking sheet. You should have about 12 scones once all the dough is scooped. Brush the tops of the scones with remaining buttermilk, 1 tbsp sugar and 2 tbsp crystallized ginger; press to adhere.
Bake scones about 20 minutes, until golden brown and when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool 10 minutes before serving.