Sugar Crusted Currant or Cranberry Scones


4 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 cup sugar

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 cup butter cut into pieces

3/4 to 1 cup currants or dried cranberries, depending on taste

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 egg

2/3 cup half or half, condensed milk, or buttermilk

 

For the Topping:

 

3 tablespoons butter, melted

1/2 cup sugar

 

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  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.  Grease a large baking sheet or cover it with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt and cinnamon.   Use a pastry knife to cut the butter into the dry ingredients and continue cutting until the mixture is coarse and uniform.  Stir in the currants or cranberries.
  3. In another bowl, stir together the vanilla extract, the egg, and the milk.  Form a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid mixture.  Stir to combine then remove to a floured counter and knead until uniform. (Do not over-knead.  Too much kneading will develop the gluten in the flour and make the scones tough.)
  4. Divide the dough into two pieces and press each into 3/4 inch thick circles.  Cut each circle into six wedges and place them on the prepared baking sheet.  Melt the 3 tablespoons of butter and brush on the scone wedges.  Sprinkle them with the sugar to cover.
  5. Let bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until the tops are lightly browned.  Remove to a rack to cool.
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