I predict that half of you upon reading this title are already clutching your throats, coughing out imaginary crumbs, and grabbing for a drink to wash these boluses down.
Get a grip, people!
Are we really so halfhearted about eating that we want our food to self-lubricate and slip down our throats unassisted?
Clearly I get way too worked up over complaints about dry baked goods.
Maybe it's my (and at least 7,882 other people's) aversion to the word used to describe their polar opposite.
Or because some treats, like scones and shortbreads, are born to be buttery and crumbly and subtly sweet and enjoyed alongside (or dunked into) something wet.
These--with lemon zest, three forms of throat-tickling ginger, and butter that's grated into tiny curlicues--throw down a tender and tasty gauntlet to you haters out there.
I'd even hasten to add the 'm' word.
Triple Ginger Scones
Makes 8 scones
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 Tbsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 2 tsp. lemon zest (about 1 large lemon's worth)
- 1 Tbsp. fresh ginger root, microplaned
- 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
- 2/3 cup crystallized ginger, finely chopped
- 3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) frozen unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup half & half, plus extra for brushing the tops
- turbinado sugar for garnishing the tops
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients through the crystallized ginger.
Using the large holes of a box grater, grate the frozen butter straight into the bowl. This process takes a lot of muscle (especially after taking on the fresh ginger too), so promise someone a scone warm from the oven for some relief halfway through. If you are alone (and not ambidextrous), then pop the bowl and butter into the fridge for a spell while you apply IcyHot.
With your fingertips, incorporate the butter shreds into the dry ingredients until coarse crumbs form. Make a well in the center and pour in the half & half. Draw the dry ingredients into the center, little by little, mixing until incorporated.
After cleaning your hands, dust them with flour. Release the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and knead it just enough to form a ball. Spank it like a baby's butt.
Roll or pat the dough into a circle about an inch thick. Use a bench scraper to cut the dough into 8 wedges and arrange them on a parchment-lined baking sheet with some elbow room between each.
Paint their bods with a little half & half and then let it hail turbinado sugar.
Bake the scones for 12 to 14 minutes, until their scent coils through the air and their tops and bottoms are crackly and burnished.
Deliver on any promises made and then eat the rest--with a creamy cup of coffee.