After reading our interview with baker, cookbook author and baking instructor Nick Malgieri, whose 10th book, Bake!: Essential Techniques for Perfect Baking, just came out, really the only thing to do is to head into the kitchen and start baking. With the weekend coming, a holiday weekend no less, we thought it would be a good time to bake scones. Chocolate scones. For a Saturday or Sunday morning, with a vat of coffee and maybe a bit of orange marmalade. Vaguely Halloweenish, and a decent prelude to the bowls of candy some of us generally consume. Turn the page for the recipe.
Milk chocolate scones
From: Nick Malgieri's Bake! Essential Techniques for Perfect Baking.
Note: Reducing the milk and dark chocolates to a powder before adding the remaining dry ingredients eliminates the need to melt the chocolate separately. Orange marmalade, raspberry preserves, or sour cherry jam are great when paired with a chocolate scone like this one.
Makes: Sixteen 2 1/2 x 3-inch triangular scones
3 cups bleached all-purpose flour (spoon into a dry-measure cup and level off)
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 ounces milk chocolate, cut into 1/4-inch pieces and chilled for 20 minutes
4 ounces bittersweet (65 to 70% cocoa solids) chocolate, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
and chilled for 20 minutes
1/2 cup slivered almonds
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cut into 12 pieces
1 large egg, cold
1 cup milk, cold
Cookie sheet or jelly-roll pan lined with parchment or foil
1. Set a rack in the middle level of the oven and preheat to 425˚F.
2. In a bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon and set aside.
3. Place the chocolate and almonds in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade and pulse to grind fine. Stop if you see any signs of the chocolate melting.
4. Add the dry ingredients to the work bowl and pulse again to combine. Add the butter and pulse to mix in fine.
5. Quickly whisk the egg and milk together and add to the food-processor bowl.
6. Pulse 3 times and then invert the contents of the bowl to a floured work surface. Carefully remove the blade. Press the dough together and fold it over on itself several times to make it smoother.
7. Divide the dough into 2 equal pieces and press each into a 6-inch disk. Arrange them on the prepared pan about 3 inches apart.
8. Use a bench scraper or a large knife to mark each square of dough into 8 triangles, cutting about halfway through the dough.
9. Bake the scones until they are well risen, firm, and dull rather than shiny, about 15 minutes.
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10. Cool the baked scones on the pan for a few minutes, then use a knife to separate them at the marked divisions. Cool them completely on a rack.
Storage: Use immediately or wrap and freeze for up to 1 month. Defrost and reheat for 7 to 8 minutes at 375˚F and serve immediately.
If you'd like to add some chocolate chips, invert the contents of the work bowl to a mixing bowl at the end of step 4, add the chips, use a rubber spatula to quickly mix them through the dry ingredients, and then use the same spatula to mix in the egg and milk mixture by hand.