Apricot Swirl Scones

Apricot Swirl Scones

3/4 C. (4 ounces) dried apricots

2 T. honey

2 2-inch strips lemon peel, no pith

1 T. lemon juice

3 C. all-purpose flour

1 T. baking powder

1/4 t. salt

1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1/4 C. granulated sugar

3 large eggs

1 t. vanilla extract

1/3 C. buttermilk or plain yogurt

Finely chop the apricots and put into a small saucepan with remaining filling ingredients. Add 1/4 cup water. Cover and simmer 10 minutes over low heat until apricots are very soft. Discard lemon peel. Mash apricots with the back of a spoon to a coarse, thick puree.

While the filling cooks, mix flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. In the large bowl of an electric mixer, beat 2 to 3 minutes, until pale and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each. Beat in vanilla.

Scrape sides of bowl; reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture; beat only until blended. Scrape sides; add buttermilk and mix only until blended.

Remove bowl from the machine. Fold apricot puree into the batter with a rubber spatula just until the puree is swirled through.

Scoop 1/3 cupfuls of dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet, placing the mounds about 2 inches apart. Loosely cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate about 45 minutes (or freeze and, when hard, remove to a plastic bag and freeze for up to 6 weeks).

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Uncover scones and bake 15 minutes. Turn heat down to 325 degrees and bake 10 to 13 minutes longer, or until pale golden brown. Cool, uncovered, on a wire rack.

Makes one dozen scones.

“Biscuits and Scones” by Elizabeth Alston


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