blueberry and lemon zest scones

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blueberry and lemon zest scones
written by Stephanie

A friend recently sent me an email telling me about a wonderful “pick your own” blueberry farm called Eagletree Farm right here in Loudoun County, Virginia. I have lived in Loudoun County for years and I had no idea this wonderful farm was nearby and had been open as a pick-your-own farm for 6 years. So, I piled the family into the truck and we headed to Eagletree Farm for a little berry pickin’! I was delighted to find the bushes full of color and bursting with berries. This farm is totally organic and uses no pesticides so, you KNOW what that means… almost as many berries went directly into our mouths as made it into our baskets. The berries where fantastic. Ripe and full of flavor! It didn’t take Easton and Scarlett long to figure out which berries to pick, the darkest blue ones, and then it was a race to see who could pick the most! After about an hour, we had 8 lbs of berries in our baskets, at least 8 lbs of “eat-as-you-pick” berry weight spread across the 4 of us and our wallet was lighter by $32.

A gorgeous picture of our blueberry bounty!

Blueberry and Lemon Zest Scones

recipe adapted from the smitten kitchen website.

The secret to making delicate scones is handling the dough as little as possible. Scones are at their best when eaten the day they are baked.

Yield = 12

Ingredients:

2 3/4 cups of all-purpose flour (I prefer White Lily)
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon aluminum-free baking powder (Rumford)
1 teaspoon baking soda
6 ounces of very cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (I use Plugra european-style butter)
1 cup (1/2 pint) fresh blueberries, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon of lemon zest, finely chopped or grated
3/4 cup of low-fat buttermilk
 
Topping:
2 tablespoons of low-fat buttermilk
turbinado or white sanding sugar for sprinkling
 

Directions:

Preheat oven 375 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside

In a bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and baking soda. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or the back of a fork until the mixture has the texture of coarse cornmeal and the biggest pieces of butter are like large peas. Fold in the blueberries and lemon zest.

At this point, I like to transfer my ingredients to my standing mixer and use the paddle attachment. Pour the buttermilk into the flour mixture and using the lowest speed, mix until the dough just comes together but a small amount of flour remains in the bowl. (Alternatively, you can drizzle the buttermilk over the flour mixture, and stir lightly with a fork or wooden spoon until the dough comes together.)

Turn out dough onto a lightly floured work surface. With lightly floured hands, gently press and pat the dough into a rectangle, 1 inch thick. Using a sharp knife, pastry wheel, or bench knife cut the rectangle into 12 triangles (reference picture above to see how to).

Transfer scones to prepared baking sheets 2″ apart. Brush scones with buttermilk, and sprinkle with the turbinado or sanding sugar. Bake until golden brown and cooked through, about 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer scones to wire racks to cool. Serve warm or room temperature. My family and I enjoy our scones with a large dollop of lemon curd!

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