Lemon Apricot Poppy Seed Scones
reakfast has always held a special charm for me. To help my young working parents in their morning rush when I was a wee one, my Great Aunt May and Great Uncle Cecil fed me breakfast then took me to day care. Not only were Aunt May and Uncle Cecil great cooks, but they also somehow imparted the importance of breakfast to physical and spiritual health.
Even though I'm not much of a morning person I don't get far down the daily line without breakfast. Breakfast is the meal necessary to stoke my body's metabolic fire. Even when trying to loose weight (or maybe I should say especially when trying to loose weight), I highly recommend beginning the day with a simple breakfast of a little protein (one egg, yogurt, cheese, etc.), a little carb (toast, cereal, etc.) and a little fruit as a way to get your calorie-burning engine running. I'm less likely to gobble up everything in sight at 11 a.m. that way, too.
I adapted this recipe from a 1998 Bon Appetit one for cranberry-orange scones. Its buttery richness definitely gives it what I consider a "feast day" designation, something reserved for, say, a breakfast-in-bed Sunday treat that nurtures the spirit. The bright citrus and tangy sweet apricot flavors along with the poppy seed crunch are sure to radiate sunshine on your day.
Apricot Lemon Poppy Seed Scones
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/3 cup sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
zest of 2 lemons
3 Tablespoons poppy seeds
3/4 cup (1 1/2) sticks cold butter, cut into 1/2" cubes
1/2 cup dried apricots, plumped in hot water if necessary, sliced thinly
1 cup cold buttermilk, plus 2 Tablespoons additional for brushing tops
Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 Tablespoons butter, melted
2 cups powdered sugar
Preheat over to 400 degrees. Mix first eight ingredients (flours through poppy seeds) together in mixing bowl. Add butter, rubbing with fingertips while tossing in the flour until mixture resembles coarse meal, trying for nothing larger than pea-sized butter bits. Mix in dried apricots. Gradually add buttermilk, stirring until moist clumps form. On a lightly floured surface, turn dough out and need briefly to bind, about 4 turns or so. Pat dough into a 1" thick round. Cut into 10 wedges. Place wedges on parchment lined baking sheet and brush tops with additional buttermilk. Space them about 2" apart, as they do expand. Bake until golden brown, about 25 minutes. Let cool ten minutes.
While scones are cooling, whisk melted butter, powdered sugar and lemon juice until smooth, adding additional lemon juice drop by drop until glaze is thin enough to brush over scone tops, but substantial enough to make a thick glaze on the warm scones. Serve warm or room temperature.