I had not realized how addicted I was to Acme Bread Company's baked goods until we left Berkeley last June. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks.
My addiction began not long after Will was born. We began walking around our neighborhood more or less constantly as a way to cope with our rather fussy little guy. We got in the habit of bjorning or strolling him over to Monterey Market - a pleasant, 10-minute walk from our house - where we'd load up on cheap, locally-grown organic veggies and fruits and fill a bag with Acme's delicious, freshly-baked, organic pastries.
My favorite was the pain au chocolat, followed closely by the cinnamon morning buns. One of these sugary little gems graced my plate almost every morning - a delicious bright spot in the dark haze of baby-induced sleep deprivation.
Until we moved back to the east coast. It's not that they don't have pastries here. They do. But they're a lot more expensive, a bit farther away, and, I'm sorry to say, not as tasty. So I did what any serious addict would do. I began baking my own breakfast goodies. Hence all the scone and quick bread recipes I've posted this year.
Of all the scones I bake, these are my favorite. Not only are they the quickest and easiest, they also contain chocolate. It's a win-win.
Cream scones are so simple -- no egg, no butter -- heavy cream provides all the fat and moisture you need.
It only takes a few minutes to get a batch of these in the oven and by the time you're finished cleaning up, the scones are ready!
Sometimes I add the orange zest for a little extra flavor and sometimes I leave it out for a more classic approach -- they're delicious either way.
This recipe is from the good old Joy of Cooking.
Chocolate Chip Cream Scones
Makes 8 large or 12 small scones
* 2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1/3 cup sugar
* 1 Tbsp baking powder
* 1/2 tsp salt
* 1 1/4 cups heavy cream (use organic)
* 1/2 cup chocolate chips
* 1 tsp grated orange zest (optional - if you add this, use an organic orange)
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Position a rack in the center of the oven. Have ready a large ungreased baking sheet.
2. Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. Stir in the chocolate chips (you can substitute currants if you prefer them to chocolate), then add the heavy cream and orange zest.
3. Mix with a wooden spoon or fork until the dry ingredients are moistened. Gather the dough into a ball and knead it gently against the sides and bottom of the bowl 5 to 10 times, turning and pressing any loose pieces into the dough each time until they adhere and the bowl is fairly clean.
4. Transfer to a lightly floured surface and pat the dough into an 8-inch round about 3/4 inch thick. Cut into 8 or 12 wedges and place at least 1/2 inch apart on the baking sheet. Brush the tops with 2 to 3 teaspoons cream or milk. If you're feeling really decadent, sprinkle the tops with a little cinnamon and sugar.
5. Bake until the tops are golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack or serve warm.
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