Are you tired of hearing me talk about how much I love autumn yet? I go on and on about the weather, the awesome squash and produce, and the delicious drinks I can concoct with whiskey and other spirits. I have bad news for you though, I can’t stop. I haven’t even shared a pumpkin recipe with you! It isn’t fall until I’ve bought the grocery store out of pureed pumpkin.
My favorite pumpkin recipe is a moist, rich pumpkin scone. I tasted my first pumpkin scone soon after college graduation, about 7 years ago, and I was in love. My co-worker and I even had a Monday ritual of heading to the Starbucks on the corner for a pumpkin spice latte and scones, all the while catching up on our weekend exploits. As good as Starbucks scones were, I was never a big fan of the icing, and they were a touch too dry. So a year later I started making my own. I make my first batch sometime in the middle of September, and just keep baking them until January, maybe even February. I bake them for myself, I bake them for brunches, and even bake them for birthday or wedding gifts. I might be a touch obsessed. Become obsessed with me, make them just once and you’ll be hooked.
2 cups flour*
⅓ cup brown sugar
½ teaspoon ginger
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup/ 1 stick cold unsalted butter
⅓ cup buttermilk
½ cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling!)
1 teaspoon vanilla
⅓ cup white chocolate chips (optional)
⅓ cup chopped pecans (optional)
*You can use up to 1 cup whole wheat, any more and they become too dense. I tend to go with ¾ of a cup wheat flour, the rest unbleached white flour.
1) Pre-heat oven to 400°F. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper
2) Whisk together flour, sugar, spices, baking powder, soda, and salt.
3) Cut cold butter into small, about 1 inch, pieces, and add to flour mixture. Using a pastry cutter or two dinner knives, cut the butter into the mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.
4) (Optional) Stir in pecans and/or white chocolate.
5) In a small separate bowl, mix pureed pumpkin, buttermilk, and vanilla together.
6) Add the buttermilk mixture to the flour mixture and stir until it just comes together.
7) Knead dough on a floured surface 6-7 times. Pat dough into a circle about 1 inch thick. Using a biscuit cutter you can cut the scones into circles or you can cut the circle into 6 or 8 triangles. This is completely a matter of preference.
8) Brush the top of the scones with a little buttermilk and sprinkle with sugar.
9) Bake for 20 minutes, remove from oven and let cool completely on wire rack before putting away, or serve slightly warm.