In my world, a breakfast featuring freshly-baked anything is a special one. On weekday mornings, breakfast is a grab and go kind of thing. Most mornings, it’s a cup of yogurt with some of my homemade granola stirred in. (This is the current fave.) It’s filling, healthy, and homemade, but it isn’t the kind of warm, comforting breakfast I long for.
With tangy cranberries and a handful or dark chocolate chips, these scones are certainly something special. Topped with a generous spoonful of orange marmalade and served alongside a hot cup of coffee, they’re guaranteed to start your morning off in the most perfect way. They’re just right for erasing a stressful week or kicking off a holiday visit from family and friends.
Cranberry-Dark Chocolate Scones
an “Apple a Day” original
3 c. all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
1/2 c. sugar
1 TBSP baking powder
3/4 tsp. salt
zest of one orange
1/2 c. (one stick) plus 1/2 TBSP cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 c. fresh or frozen cranberries, chopped
3/4 c. dark chocolate chips, divided
3/4 c. buttermilk
1/4 c. fresh orange juice (from zested orange)
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1. Place flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and orange zest in a food processor. Pulse to mix. Add butter to food processor and pulse until mixture resembles coarse sand; visible butter pieces should remain.
2. Transfer flour and butter mixture to a large bowl and stir in cranberries and 1/2 c. chocolate chips.
3. In a small bowl, whisk together buttermilk, orange juice, vanilla, and eggs. Pour wet mixture into dry mixture and stir until just combined. Dough should be slightly sticky. If dough is too loose or wet, add just enough flour to make dough more workable.
4. Generously dust a work surface with flour. Turn out dough and divide into two equal parts. One at a time, form dough into a circle just under 1 in. thick. Cut into six wedges. Repeat with remaining dough.
5. Place cut dough on a baking sheet lined with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper. Put in the freezer for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, heat oven to 425 degrees F. (Dough may be wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and foil and completely frozen at this point. To bake, follow recipe instructions, adding a few extra minutes to baking time.)
6. Bake scones 20-25 minutes, until lightly golden on top. Sides should look fluffy and cooked but not wet or doughy. Remove from oven and let cool completely.
7. When scones are completely cooled, melt remaining chocolate chips and remaining 1/2 TBSP butter in a double boiler or by microwaving, 30 seconds at a time, stirring after each interval. Place into a piping bag or plastic zip top bag with a small tip snipped off. Pipe a thin drizzle over scones. When dry, serve scones with butter and orange marmalade. Makes 12.