“I’m all for cream cheese frosting.”
These are scrumptious scones. Both the scones themselves and the frosting are made with cream cheese plus they are loaded with walnuts. They are light and flaky but rich enough to almost be a dessert. Consider them for brunch or a midday snack.
This is an easy scone to make. Cut the cream cheese into the flour mixture right along with the butter. The trick is to make sure that the cream cheese and the butter are both very cold.
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The frosting portion of this recipe is generous. You will be able to scoop lots of frosting on your scones.
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup cold butter
5 ounces cream cheese
1 1/4 cup buttermilk
1 large egg
1 cup walnut pieces
For the frosting
3 ounces cream cheese
1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
1. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar. Use a pastry knife to cut the butter and cream cheese into the dry ingredients until the mixture is coarse and uniform.
Baker’s note: Use very cold butter. The secret to flaky scones is to keep the butter a solid. If the dough gets warm enough to melt the butter before baking, you will have a very different consistency. The little pieces of butter create steamy pockets in the scones in the hot oven.
2. In a small bowl, mix the buttermilk and egg together. Form a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid mixture. Stir to combine then remove to a floured counter and fold the dough until almost uniform.
Baker’s note: Do not over-knead. Too much kneading will develop the gluten in the flour and make the scone tough.
3. Pat the dough into a 3/4-inch thick slab. Cut into wedges, squares, or circles. Place the scones on a lightly-greased baking sheet.
Baker’s note: Use a cookie cutter, knife, or a glass with the edges dipped in flour to cut shapes. Do not pat the edges down but leave the cuts as sharp as possible to allow the scones to rise in layers.
Work the cut dough pieces as little as possible. The more you handle the dough, the more the gluten will be developed and the more likely the butter will melt. Either will cause tougher scones.
4. Bake for 14 to 16 minutes or until the tops are lightly-browned. Remove to a rack to cool. Serve warm.
To make the glaze, whip the cream cheese until soft. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla and continue beating until soft. Add enough milk to make a soft frosting. Frost the scones while they are still warm.