This ones were baked recently for a friend's birthday. I always like baking stuff that people enjoy for their birthdays, so I was very happy when she told me that she liked anything almond flavored. At first, I was torn between cookies or a cake. But, cookies are getting too much attention from my kitchen lately, so I quickly vetoed them. I then purchased all of the ingredients for a beautiful almond cake, but quickly changed up my mind when I was flipping through my favorite cookbook and saw another delightful recipe.
So far, my birthday treats this year have fallen on Wednesdays. I get to school so early on Wednesdays that I have brought in breakfast items because it felt more appropriate. I guess the thought of digging into a icing laden cake at 8:30 a.m. doesn't sit well with me. Dorie's toasted almond scone recipe has been on my to-bake list for quite some time, so I knew I had to make these as a treat. I felt that the finished product needed some jazz so I whipped up a quick almond icing to drizzle on top. Huzzah! Toasted almondy glazed goodness.
Toasted Almond Scones
Yield: 12 scones
- 1 cup blanched almonds (whole, slivered or sliced), toasted
- 2 Tbsp sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1/3 cup cold heavy cream
- 1/4 cup cold milk
- 1/8 tsp pure almond extract
- 1 3/4 cup AP flour
- 1 Tbsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 stick (8 Tbsp) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 1/4 cup sliced almonds (optional)
- Glaze: 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tsp pure almond extract
- 2 Tbsp milk
- For Scones: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat.
- Divide the toasted almonds in half. Finely grind 1/2 cup in food processor or blender with sugar, taking care not to overgrind the nuts and end up with an almond butter! Finely chop the other 1/2 cup of toasted almonds.
- Stir the egg, cream, milk and almond extract together in a small bowl.
- Whisk the flour, ground almonds and sugar mixture, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl. Drop in the butter and, using your fingers, toss to coat the pieces of butter with flour. Quickly, with a pastry blender (or your fingers), cut and rub the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture is pebbly. (You'll have pea-size pieces, pieces the size of oatmeal flakes and pieces the size of everything in between - this is just right.)
- Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry ingredients and stir with a fork just until the dough, which will be wet and sticky, comes together. Don't overdo it. Stir in the chopped almonds.
- Still in the bowl, gently knead the dough by hand, or turn with a rubber spatula 8 to 10 times. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and divide in half. Working with one piece at a time, pat the dough into a rough circle about 5 inches in diameter, cut into 6 wedges and top each scone with a few sliced almonds, if desired.
- Place scones on a baking sheet. Bake for 20-22 minutes, or until the tops are golden and firmish. Transfer to a rack and cool completely before drizzling with almond glaze.
- For Almond Glaze: Combine powdered sugar, almond extract, and milk in a small bowl; whisk until smooth. If too thick, add more milk. If too thin, add more powdered sugar. Drizzle icing over cooled scones. Sprinkle more sliced almonds over glaze, if desired.