Good scone recipes are hard to find. Get one step wrong in a scone recipe and it's ruined. Timing and temperature are everything. After consulting with an expert in the field - Heather Perine, friend and author of Boston Girl Bakes - I think I've nailed it. Actually, nothing compares to Heather's Orange Cranberry Scones. But, this recipe made with actual vanilla beans is a close second. ;)
Vanilla Bean Scones
Makes 24 mini scones
Ingredients: For scones: 2 cups bread or all-purpose flour 1/3 cup granulated white sugar 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold, unsalted butter
1/2 cup cold heavy whipping cream
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup powdered sugar Seeds scraped from one vanilla bean
1 1/2 tablespoons whole milk
1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 2. Cut butter into 1/2-inch cubes and return to refrigerator. 3. Whip the cream with a hand-held electric mixer just until soft peaks form when beaters are lifted. Place into the refrigerator.
4. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. 5. Add the butter to the bowl. With a fork, toss it to coat with the flour. Press the butter cubes between your fingers to form very thin, pea-size flakes. 6. Make a well in the center of the butter and flour mixture. Pour the whipping cream and vanilla extract into the well. With a spatula, stir the flour mixture with the cream mixture until it’s all moistened. 7. Lightly knead the dough in the bowl just until it holds together. Turn it out onto a lightly floured counter. Gently knead the dough a few times until it is slightly stretchy and can be shaped into a ball. 8. Once the dough is in a ball, divide it into three equal portions. Flatten each portion into a round disc shape, about 1 inch thick. (Optional OR if dough sits out too long: Wrap each disc in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.) 9. Cut each disc into 8 small, triangle-shaped wedges, like a pizza. (Can also be cut into 4 wedges for larger scones, if desired.) Place wedges about one inch apart on prepared cookie sheet. 10. Bake the scones for 12-16 minutes or until slightly golden. Place on a wire rack to cool.
11. Make the glaze by stirring together the powdered sugar, vanilla bean seeds and milk in a bowl until smooth. Once the scones have cooled for at least 10 minutes, dip the top of each scone into the glaze. Enjoy!