Strawberry Lemon Poppy Seed Scones.
Looking for that perfect, moist, and fruity scone recipe? This is it!
What did you do this weekend? In between a little early birthday shopping, I baked more this past weekend than I have in a long, long time. I had two scone recipe fails on Saturday morning and instantly felt the need to add a little vodka to my orange juice. Can you blame me? I felt like such a failure! But it’s only through our mistakes that we can learn, right?
I attempted the scones for the 3rd time and the stars aligned. I bit into a perfectly moist, soft, sweet, slightly crisp exterior with a smile beaming ear to ear. These scones, my friends, are absolute perfection.
I have never been a fan of scones until I tried a few at the Panera Bread test kitchen event last month. I have always found scones to be a little too dry, sometimes bland, and way too crunchy for my taste. Are you the same way? Boy, was I quickly proven wrong! If done right, scones can melt in your mouth. Soft interiors, crisp edges, flaky, buttery, and tender.
I am now a scone enthusiast. Excuse me while I go bite into my third scone of the weekend. (That’s what my 6am runs are for.)
I worked on a few different scone recipes this weekend and I’m thrilled to share this one with you. It was my personal favorite out of the bunch; lemon baked goods are my weakness. They’re like a lemon poppy seed muffin, only kicked up a notch. Filled with juicy strawberries in every single bite.
Before you begin, there are a couple scone MUSTS that you need to know.
First, in my mess of a kitchen Saturday morning, I learned that I much prefer a scone made with frozen butter compared to just cold butter. Why? It’s imperative to use cold butter in this scone recipe because when the little crumbs of butter melt as the scone bakes, they release steam and create little pockets of air – this makes the scones a little airy on the inside while remaining flaky and crisp on the outside. Cold butter isn’t good enough, it must be frozen. Simply place a stick of butter in the freezer for 30 minutes ahead of time.
You can shred the frozen butter with a grater or process a couple times in your food processor. I use 8 Tablespoons (1 stick; 115 grams) in my scone recipe. No more, no less.
Work the frozen butter shreds into the flour mixture until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs; I used a pastry blender to do this. You may also use your hands or two knives.
Another important step to note? Don’t over mix the dough! After you the flour/butter mixture resembles coarse crumbs (pictured below, left) – then it is time to add your wet ingredients: egg, heavy cream, vanilla, strawberries. The cream adds SO much moisture. Don’t think about substituting it! Gently add these ingredients in and mix very gently together. When you overmix a dough it will over develop the gluten making it tough.
So the trick to a plate of light-textured scones? Avoid over working the dough.
By the way, don’t get nervous if some strawberry juice gets worked into the dough as you incorporate them. The juice will simply add color and flavor to your scones.
Pat the dough down into an 8-inch circle on your baking sheet and cut into 8 triangles.
My tip? Use the sharpest knife you own! The scone dough is quite moist and will likely stick a bit to your knife. That’s OK. Before baking, I sprinkled with a little coarse sugar. I love the crunch it adds.
The sweet lemon glaze is optional, but highly recommended – especially if you’re a lemon lover like I am. It’s a simple combination of lemon juice, confectioners’ sugar, and cream. I went light on the glaze because I didn’t want the flavorful scone to get lost under it. Instead of the glaze, try a simple dollop of whipped cream.
These tender, fruity scones are best when they are still a bit warm from the oven. You know, when the strawberries are still firm and that sugary topping is still crunchy. When warm, the glaze melts into every crevice and seeps into the interior.
Seriously, look how tasty.
A cross between a buttery scone, a soft poppy seed muffin, and a refreshing glass of strawberry lemonade. Does it truly get any better?
Try these scones; you won’t be disappointed!
Strawberry Lemon Poppy Seed Scones
Looking for that perfect, moist, and fruity scone recipe? This is it! The heavy cream adds so much moisture. Don't think about substituting it!
Yield: 8 scones
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
- 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour
- 6 Tablespoons (80g) granulated sugar
- 2 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons poppy seeds
- zest of 1 large lemon
- 8 Tablespoons (115g) unsalted butter, frozen
- 1/2 cup (120ml) heavy cream
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup (150g) chopped fresh strawberries (frozen is ok - do not thaw)
- coarse sugar, optional (I used Sugar In The Raw)
- Juice of 1 large lemon
- 1 cup (120g) confectioners' sugar (or more)
- 1 Tablespoon (15ml) half-and-half (or heavy cream or milk)
Preheat oven to 400F degrees. Adjust baking rack to the middle-low position. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and poppy seeds. Add the lemon zest and whisk together again. Grate the frozen butter (I used a box grater; a food processor also works - here is the one I own and love). Toss the grated butter into the flour mixture and combine it with a pastry cutter, your fingers, or two knives until the mixture resembles coarse meal (as pictured above). Set aside.
In a small bowl, whisk the cream, egg, and vanilla together. Drizzle it over the flour mixture and then toss the mixture together with a rubber spatula until everything appears moistened. Slowly and gently fold in the strawberries. Try your best to not overwork the dough at any point. Do not worry if the dough begins to turn a little pink from the strawberries- that's expected depending how juicy yours are. Dough will be wet. Work the dough into a ball as best you can and transfer to the prepared baking pan. Press into a neat 8″ disc and cut into equal wedges with a very sharp knife. Top with a sprinkle of coarse sugar, if using.
Bake for 20-25 minutes or until lightly golden and cooked through. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes. While the scones are cooling, whisk together the glaze ingredients until smooth. Drizzle over warm scones.
Scones are best enjoyed right away, though unglazed leftover scones keep well at room temperature for 2 extra days. Scones freeze well, up to 3 months.
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How about some Orange Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins next?
Or a batch of Blueberry Sweet Rolls with Lemon Glaze
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