Coffee shop taste from your kitchen

Published 8:51 am Wednesday, December 29, 2010

This Christmas, Michael and I got one of those new Keurig coffee machines. The one with all the bells and whistles. We love it and I think Michael could probably sell them for a living.

Anyway, the new coffee maker is the inspiration of this week’s column. I had to come up with something that is perfectly paired with coffee.

I know coffee people think anything goes with coffee, but when I think of sitting in a little coffee shop with my steaming cup of aromatic coffee and my laptop, the perfect pairing is a coffee house scone.

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The buttermilk scones are the best and you can add anything you want to them; Dried fruits, nuts, chocolate chips, cheese or whatever you like. My favorites are dried cherries and toasted almonds, but make it your own and enjoy the warm soft crumble of a scone.

Coffee House Scones

3 and one-third cups all-purpose flour

2 tsp baking soda

2 tsp cream of tartar

2 tsp sugar

4 tbs unsalted butter

2 tbs soft vegetable shortening

1 and one-fourths cup buttermilk

1 egg, beaten, for an egg wash

1 cup sliced almonds, toasted

1 cup dried cherries, chopped

1 baking sheet, lined with parchment

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Put the flour into a bowl with the baking soda, cream of tartar and sugar. Chop the butter and vegetable shortening into pieces and drop them into the flour.

Rub the fats into the flour and then pour in the buttermilk, working everything together to form a dough.

Then, work the cherries and almonds into the dough evenly. Lightly flour your work surface and half the dough.

Work into a ball with half the dough and roll with a rolling pin into a two-inch thick circle.

With a sharp knife, cut the circle in half, then fourths, then eighths.

Place uncooked scones on the parchment-lined baking sheet relatively close together. Brush the beaten egg on with a pastry brush to get that golden shine on top. Bake approximately 12 minutes or until golden on top and dry on the bottom, they will have a light feel. Place on wire rack to cool.

Repeat with other half of the dough. Serve with butter, whipping cream and/or jam. And don’t forget that great cup of coffee to go with your coffee house scones.

Have fun in the kitchen, experiment and indulge your cravings.

Laura Clements is a food writer for the Demopolis Times.