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What you need to know for 08/18/2017

Peach scones are a summertime treat

Peach scones are a summertime treat

Suitable for breakfast, brunch or dessert
Peach scones are a summertime treat
Glazed and ready to eat — summer peach scones.
Photographer: Caroline Lee/For The Daily Gazette

Here is a recipe from my niece Ann Marie, for summer peach scones with a strong vanilla note — in both the dough and the frosting. Lovely for breakfast and perfect for brunch, they’re also sweet enough to satisfy for dessert.

These scones are made using the easy biscuit method, the same way you make pie dough: sift together dry ingredients, cut in the fat until mixture resembles coarse crumbs, mix together the wet ingredients, then add them into the dry just until a soft dough is formed. Be sure not to overwork the dough.

Some tips: the dough is shaggy and messy, and you do have to work it a bit to break up clumps of peaches. I checked them after eight minutes, then checked them a few times more for a total of 15 minutes. And use the leftover flour on the work surface on the knife before you slice the dough.

They’re best served freshly baked, but this recipe can be made ahead, the dough arranged on the baking sheet, then popped into the oven when you’re ready to cook. Even better, the very cold fat helps the dough set up into many layers before it melts away.

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Summer Peach Scones

Makes 8 scones

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
6 tbsp. cold butter, cubed
1 egg
1/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup sour cream
2 tsp. vanilla 
1/2 cup fresh peaches, cut into small pieces
Egg wash, 1 beaten egg mixed with a little water or milk, optional
 
Glaze
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
Heavy cream, about 1 and 1/2 tbsp.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Lightly grease a baking sheet or line with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking soda and salt. Add the butter and use a pastry blender or knives to work the mixture into small pieces.

In a medium bowl, whisk together egg, heavy cream, sour cream and vanilla and peaches. Add the wet ingredients to the dry, mixing until just combined into a soft dough.

Turn out onto a well-floured surface and work lightly until the dough is just cohesive. It will be messy. Transfer to baking sheet and shape the dough into a flat disc about a half-inch thick. Slice into 8 wedges using a floured knife. Brush with beaten egg.

Bake at 425 degrees in the center of the oven for about 15 minutes. Scones are done when golden brown and a toothpick inserted comes out dry.

Wait until the scones have cooled off, then mix powdered sugar, vanilla and enough cream to make the glaze.

Use the back of your mixing spoon to spread the icing. The best time to ice is when they are warm, not hot.

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