I’ve never posted scones before! So I have to use lots of exclamation points!
Okay, I’m kidding. About the exclamation points, not the scones. I’ll try and control myself, but it can be hard sometimes.
When you’re a parent, weekends are often more tiring and hectic than the weekdays. Most people head home Friday afternoon with happy plans to sleep and kick back. Or at least, that’s the perception I get. But our weekends are quite different.
This past Saturday, I got hit with a migraine. My whole life, migraines have hit after periods of stress. So after each baby was born, bam! Migraine. After I finish a stressful project? Bam again. And after a long work week with lots of conflict and worry, along comes another. I’m used to them by now. They’re just kind of hard to recover from when you’re home with three noisy kids. Screaming, screeching kids.
By Saturday night, I knew I had to bake. I was listlessly paging through cookbooks, looking for inspiration, trying to avoid the dessert I’d promised myself I would bake. That happens sometimes. I get excited about baking, but then there are 20 steps involved and I just. Can. Not.
Suddenly, I remembered my baking cabinet. It’s a candy lover’s dream. Kenny has strict instructions not to raid my baking cabinet, and he doesn’t really follow the rules. I often find him with his hand inside, pulling out handfuls of mini M & Ms or peanut butter chips. And he wonders why our grocery lists always include more of that stuff.
Sitting in that cabinet was an acquisition I had yet to try: the cherry-flavored Nestle brand of filled chocolate chips. My mind combined those chips with almond meal, and it all came together. After all, the next day was Mother’s Day, and my mother loves almond. Cherry almond scones would be perfect.
Scones are not difficult to make, despite daunting pictures everywhere of shaved frozen butter. You can definitely use frozen butter, but if you work quickly, cold butter works. I would recommend a pastry blender if you have one, but if not, life goes on.
As for the base, I substituted some of the regular flour for almond meal. That, along with almond extract, provides a perfect pairing with those cherry-filled chocolate chips. And it’s a very springtime-esque scone to present to anyone!
Weekends are crazy, and sometimes I can’t decide what to bake until the last minute. But somehow, everything turns out okay, migraine or not. And when the headache fades and the work week starts, I can relax with a bunch of baked goods. It is what it is, friends!
2 cups flour
1/4 cup almond meal (ground almonds)
3 tablespoons sugar
2 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup cold butter, cut into chunks
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup cherry-filled chocolate chips (Nestle brand)
sliced almonds and sugar, for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 400. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
- In a bowl, sift together the flour, almond meal, sugar, and baking powder. Using a pastry blender or a fork, cut in the chunks of butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Mix in the almond extract, egg, milk and cherry-filled chocolate chips until a dough starts to form. Knead the dough in the bowl several times until everything is smooth and incorporated.
- Form the dough into a 6-inch circle. Place it on the cookie sheet. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into eight wedges.
- Sprinkle the dough with sugar and almonds. Bake for 15-20 minutes until the scones are golden at the edges.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.