Blueberry Crumb Scones

20130428-125734.jpg Scones are of my favorite foods. These scones in particular have a good story behind them. You see, sometimes I have very specific dreams about food (for example these). One night, I dreamt that my sister made some blueberry scones from a King Arthur Flour recipe. They had a crumb topping, and big gooey pockets of blueberries. As you can imagine, after such a vivid and tasty portrayal, I had to recreate them! Unfortunately, I didn’t find any recipe like the one from my dream on King Arthur (although King Arthur Flour has incredible recipes in general). I made ones similar to these ones, only I used the original Cooks Illustrated recipe for blueberry scones and added a light, crunchy crumb topping. These are quite a bit lighter than my dark chocolate strawberry scones, which is only fitting for spring.

20130429-013856.jpg These are a moist, buttermilk scone with a bit of lemon zest, rolled up like a jelly roll filled with blueberries and topped with a crumb topping. By the time they’re done baking, the blueberries are practically bursting from the scone, having gotten very juicy. The scones are lightly fragranced with lemon, and the crumb topping provides a very nice texture contrast to the blueberries. That’s what I call a dream come true *wink*.

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Note: for a picture tutorial, visit my chocolate strawberry scones post.

Blueberry Scones

Adapted from Cooks Illustrated

Scones:

8 tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter, frozen
1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup sour cream
2 cups (10 oz) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting work surface
1/2 cup (2.5 oz) sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
1 tbsp butter, melted

Topping:

1 tbsp butter, melted
2 tbsp all-purpose flour
2 tbsp sugar
Pinch salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425F. Grate frozen butter on the holes of a large box grater. If using fresh blueberries, place
in freezer until needed.

Whisk together milk and sour cream in a medium bowl; refrigerate until needed. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt in a medium mixing bowl. In small bowl, combine sugar and lemon zest and rub zest into sugar until it is moistened. Whisk into flour mixture. Add grated butter to flour mixture and combine.

Add milk mixture; fold with a spatula just until combined. Turn dough out unto floured surface and knead 6-8 times. Roll into a 12-inch square.

Fold dough into thirds like a business letter; lift short ends of dough and fold into thirds again to form a square.

Transfer dough to floured plate and freeze for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine all crumb topping ingredients in a bowl and set aside.

Roll out again into a 12″ square; scatter berries over dough and press down lightly.

Roll dough into cylinder, pressing to form a tight log. Arrange log seam side down and pat into a 12 by 4-inch rectangle. Cut rectangle crosswise into 4 equal pieces.

Cut each rectangle diagonally to form 2 triangles and transfer to baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush with melted butter; top with crumb topping.

Bake scones 15-18 minutes or until set; the exterior will be firm, golden, and slightly springy to the touch. Cool scones 1 minute on sheets, then transfer to cooling rack and cool at least 10 minutes before serving.

Yield: 8 scones

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Blackberry Lemon Cupcakes

20120905-222248.jpgThis year the blackberries are ripe right about now, leaving us in a mad scramble for recipes to use up these delicious fruits (berries) of summer. Whenever I make something with berries, it usually has to have lemon in it, because the lemon+berry combo is just too good to separate. Now these cupcakes you see here are extraordinary, and not just because they have that seriously delicious combo in them.

20120905-223109.jpgFirst, as always, I’ll break it down for you. When you bite into the cake, you realize this might be the moistest cake on the planet. Seriously, I don’t think it could get any more moist if I wanted it to. Then there are the fresh blackberries just wanting to burst out of the cake, as it brings memories of blackberry pie to mind, as cooked blackberries always seem to do. Then a layer of tart lemon glaze dripping down the sides makes a sweet contrast to the fairly mellow flavor of the cake, and THEN...the frosting. You actually cook down some blackberries, purée them, and pour that into the whipped buttercream and oh. my. goodness… fresh blackberry frosting tastes amazing!

20120905-223905.jpgThese cupcakes are worth using up those blackberries you just picked, or going out and picking some. Make a bright summer statement before those warm autumn flavors take over. Summer is still here. Enjoy all 15 more days of it!!

Blackberry Lemon Cupcakes

Cupcake recipe adapted from smitten kitchen

For the Cupcakes:

1 1/4 cups + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, divided
1 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup + 2 tbsp granulated sugar
Zest of 1/2 lemon
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 eggs, at room temperature
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp buttermilk
1 1/2 cups blackberries

For the Glaze:
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
Lemon juice

For the Frosting:

1 cup butter, at room temperature
1/2 tsp vanilla
Pinch salt
2 cups blackberries

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line muffin pan with cupcake papers.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 1/4 cups of the all-purpose flour, the baking powder and salt; set aside.

3. In the bowl of a stand mixer (or large mixing bowl), use your fingertips to rub together the sugar and lemon zest until the zest is completely incorporated and the sugar is evenly moistened. Add the butter and cream together on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes.

4. Reduce the speed to low and add the eggs one at a time, mixing until incorporated after each and scraping down the bowl each time. Add the vanilla and mix to combine.

5. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture, beating until just combined, followed by 1/2 of the buttermilk, another 1/3 of the flour mixture, the remaining buttermilk and the remaining flour.

6. In a large bowl, combine the blackberries and the remaining 2 tablespoon of all-purpose flour, tossing together gently so they are evenly coated. Use a rubber spatula to gently fold the blueberries into the cake batter. Spread the cake batter in the prepared muffin pan by 1/4 cupfuls. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until cupcakes spring back when gently pressed. Cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes, then remove from pan and cool completely on rack.

7. Once the cupcakes are cool, whisk together the powdered sugar and as much lemon juice to thin to a pourable texture, until smooth. The icing should be quite thick. Spoon glaze onto cupcakes.

8. For frosting, In medium saucepan combine berries and 2 tbsp water, bring to boil, then lower heat to a simmer; stirring and mashing berries for 3 minutes. Strain liquid out of berries. Blend in blender until smooth, and measure out 1/2 cup. Meanwhile, whip butter with whisk attachment on mixer for 5 minutes. Add vanilla and powdered sugar. Add berry purée. Frost cupcakes as desired, applying a generous amount.

Yield: 15 cupcakes