I was settling sweetly into fall, having allowed those feelings of rush rush rush pass me by when I suddenly realized: My apples were going “off.” This means all those apples I had gathered from beneath the trees just a few weeks ago were beginning to look a little wrinkly and soft. Oops. So much for my reverie.
It’s good practice to buy fresh produce but that actually requires doing something with this produce. And I sometimes don’t follow through. (I am ashamed to admit to how many bell peppers I have tossed out recently.) I needed to snap awake before the apples were for naught.
Through the haze, I noticed my friend Jenny on Facebook crowing over an apple cheddar scone recipe she had found on Smitten Kitchen. (By the way, Jenny is doing something magnificent with Young Adult literature at 60secondrecap.com. Check it out!)
Anyway, I just found this to be the perfect answer since I adore this scone recipe taught to me by an English baker and had yet to try making savory scones. Urgency replaced my opiate state and I skipped swim practice in order to make a batch and keep the bad apples from ruining the whole lot (you knew I’d work that in somehow, right?).
Since one can’t make a proper meal of only scones I cooked up some applesauce and found the pair to be a fine autumn light supper. Don’t judge.
It was so delicious, I had it again for breakfast.
Apple cheddar savory scones
The key to making perfect scones is to use self-rising flour. Sifting the flour will add air and ensure that the scones are light. Work quickly and lightly and handle the dough as little as possible.
2 cups self-rising flour*
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard
5 tablespoons butter, room temperature
1/2 cup shredded cheddar
1/2 cup dried apple chunks
1/2 cup milk, approximately
For the dried apple
Prehead oven to 375 degrees F. Line a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Core, peel, and cut 1 apple into chunks and bake on the sheet for 20 minutes. Cool completely.
For the scones
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. and grease a baking sheet.
Sift the flour into a mixing bowl. Add salt and dry mustard. Cut the butter into the bowl with a knife or pastry cutter. Using your fingertips, rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles fine bread crumbs. (You can also use a hand mixer to do this.) Add cheddar and apples. Make a well in the center of the mixture and drop in the egg. Adding a portion of the milk at a time, stir the egg and milk into the dough using a rounded-edge knife. How much milk you use depends on the size of the egg. The dough should incorporate all the flour, but it shouldn’t be wet and sticky.
Turn the dough onto a floured surface. Using your fingertips, gently smooth out any cracks in the dough. Lightly press out the dough or roll lightly with a rolling pin until about 3/4 inch thick. Cut with a 2-inch round cutter dipped in flour. Place rounds on the greased baking sheet and brush the remaining milk on top with a pastry brush. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown.
After removing the scones from the oven, put them onto a cooling rack covered with a tea towel. Place another tea towel on top of the scones to trap the steam and to keep the scones from drying out as they cool. Serve warm with butter. Makes 8 scones.
*If you don’t have self-rising flour, use 1 teaspoon baking powder for every cup of flour.
Leftover scones can be frozen for several weeks. To reheat, wrap a frozen scone in a paper towel and microwave for 30 seconds. Enjoy!
4 apples, peeled, cored, and choped
1 tablespoon white sugar
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 cinnamon stick
3/4 quarters cup water
Add all the ingredients to a sturdy pot, bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 15 to 20 minutes until the apples are soft. Remove the cinnamon stick and mash with a potato masher. Serve warm.
Kendra Nordin blogs at Kitchen Report.
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