Monday, September 21, 2009

vanilla-dipped mini-scones

As you may have gathered, I read the King Arthur Flour blog religiously. I saw this post about "scone nibbles," AKA vanilla-dipped mini-scones, and I had to try them immediately. Mini-anything are cute, right? And smaller scones mean either you can eat more, or you can feel less guilty (your choice). I loved the idea of the vanilla glaze, as well.

They are delicious! Perfect little two-bite morsels of vanilla and chocolate goodness. The texture was just right - not too dry and sandy - and studded with mini chocolate chips. As the KAF people note, the glaze keeps in moisture and extends the life of the scones for a couple of days. Also, because you bake the scones in 32 triangles, then cut them again once baked, the softer "inner" side of each scone (where it used to be attached to its other half) takes the glaze really nicely. I don't know if it makes sense, but check out the directions below and it will. They were super easy to make, and just a little time-consuming (dipping the scones), but totally worth it.

Anyway, go and make these, now. Bring them to your office, or box them up and give them to your friends. They will thank you!

Vanilla-Glazed Mini-Scones
Scones
2 3/4 cups (11 1/2 ounces) flour
1/3 cup (2 3/8 ounces) suar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 stick cold butter, cut into pats
1 to 2 cups (6 to 12 ounces) mini chocolate chips
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 cup to 2/3 cup (4 to 5 3/8 ounces) milk or half-and-half

Glaze
3 1/2 cups (14 ounces) powdered sugar
7 tablespoons water (enough for a thin glaze)
1 teaspoon vanilla

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together all scone dry ingredients. Work in the butter until it's unevenly crumbly. (It's okay if some larger lumps are still in there.) Stir in the chocolate chips. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, vanilla, and 1/2 cup of milk/half-and-half. Add the liquid ingredients to the flour mixture and stir until all is moistened and the mixture holds together. Only stir in additional milk/half-and-half if needed, if the mixture is too dry or doesn't come together.

Scrape the dough onto a well-floured work surface. Pat or roll it into an approximately 8" square, a scant 3/4" thick. If necessary, use a big spatula to lift up the square and sprinkle more flour underneath. If I remember right, I think I used parchment paper, which I floured.

Cut the square into 2" squares (16 squares total). Now cut each square in half diagonally (32 small triangles). You can use a pizza cutter, but if you're working on a silpat, be careful not to press down too hard!

Transfer the scones onto a parchment-lined sheet. They can be set close together. All 32 scones should fit on an 13x18" half-sheet pan. Pop them in the freezer, uncovered, for 30 minutes, so they'll rise nicely. Then preheat the oven to 425F. Bake for 19-20 minutes, until golden brown. Let them cool on the pan, and then cut each one in half (64 mini triangles). It doesn't matter if they're all exactly the same size, so don't overthink it.

Now make the glaze by stirring together all the ingredients. Here's where it gets fun. Line a baking sheet with parchment and pour half the glaze on. Set the scones on the parchment and drizzle the rest of the glaze over. I used a pastry brush to brush glaze on the tops, but I also found it was easier to just pick them up and dip them in the extra glaze. Make sure you cover all sides for the nicest consistency. Place dipped scones on a wire rack set over a cookie sheet to catch the drips. They dry pretty quickly, and then you can store them in a tupperware.

The pictures are a little uneven and unfocused, but they'll give you an idea of what to anticipate... serious yumminess!

Baked
Sitting in the vanilla glaze
Drizzled with glaze
Dipped and drying on the rack. Ready to eat!