Tim and I came home yesterday from a quick weekend visit to Chicago. The first time we’ve been back since Christmas, this trip was a whirlwind of loud, excited family conversation, the kind that leaves you out of breath, with everyone talking over everyone else; long, lazy mornings, the ones you almost forgot how much you loved, complete with a certain white, fluffy dog breaking down gates and waiting outside your bedroom door until you let him in; a blog meetup downtown, organized by the just-as-lovely-in-person! Nicole of Eat This Poem, whose months-ago idea for extending her work conference led to a Saturday lunch made up of six people who’d driven, taken trains, walked city blocks and navigated parking garages to come out and share a few hours with some of the Internet voices they find dear.
In the span of these four days, beyond our walking around in Chicago April and taking Instagram photos of our faces in the Bean (officially called Cloud Gate; who knew?), my brother gave us cannoli cupcakes, we watched (and took notes as) my mom blackened fish, and my dad read right through the two children’s books my friend Kathryn had sent when she found out how much he’d loved them as a kid.
Hours before we left, though, before we ate my mom’s cherry pie or laughed as my dad pulled out his wallet and tried to hand me spending money, before we dropped our jaws at the multitasking power of Erin from Naturally Ella (unbelievable!) or got inspired by the gardening know-how of Alex and Sonja, we did this: baked my friend Kendra’s honey oat grapefruit scones.
Kendra first emailed me about these scones last month, sometime in the middle of March, after she’d baked them and dubbed them “the bomb dot com.” Kendra, beyond being the now-retired food blogger I once shared lunch with in North Carolina and the truly wise voice who read Tamar Adler’s book and then immediately wrote me to say, “get it,” is also one half of the ever hilarious Let’s Be Real podcast I love to listen to. More importantly, she’s always right about food. And she’s as passionate about feeding people as half of America was about the Mad Men premiere Sunday night. When she and I get emailing about making stock or finding farm-fresh eggs, it’s not unusual for me to be talking about it for days afterwards. That’s why, when Kendra emails you with a recipe, you make it (even if it takes you three weeks to do so).
We ate scones while we finished packing for the weekend that’s now over. We ate scones on our short one-hour flight into Chicago’s Midway Airport. We’ll eat scones sometime in the days or weeks ahead, since, per Kendra’s advice, we’ve got the extra scones in the freezer right now, ready to be rewarmed in the oven and sliced with butter all over again.
Kendra’s Honey Oat Grapefruit Scones
Makes eight good-sized scones
One small change we made to these scones was in the total amount of grapefruit juice, which I imagine will vary based on the juiciness of your fruit. So what I did was I went ahead and squeezed the juice of half a grapefruit into a measuring cup but then added it to the mixture a little at a time (make sure to do this at the end, as Kendra instructs!) until it came together well. If you don’t need all the juice, enjoy sipping some fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice for your cooking trouble!
Also, note that since I didn’t have Greek yogurt, I strained the plain organic yogurt I had through a cheesecloth, which ended up giving me about 1/4 cup total, and that worked fine.
1 cup einkorn flour
3/4 cup oat flour (easy to make by blending steel-cut oats until fine)
1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1/4 cup coconut palm sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon ginger powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
The zest of one lemon
8 ounces (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cubed
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt (or, in a pinch, strained regular yogurt, per above note)
3 tablespoons honey
The juice of half a grapefruit (might not need all of it, per above note)
Preheat your oven to 400°F, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, oats, coconut sugar, baking powder, baking soda, ginger and salt. Toss the lemon zest with the dry ingredients.
Add the cubed butter to the dry ingredients. Using a pastry cutter or your fingers, rub or cut the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles small, coarse peas. Work quickly so the butter doesn’t warm too much. Add yogurt and honey, and toss everything together with a fork or your hands until all of the dry ingredients are moistened.
Add the grapefruit juice last. Use the juice to bring the batter together, adding a little at a time until the mixture forms a nice scone-style dough (i.e., it needs to hold together in a disc shape that you place on the baking sheet; it shouldn’t be wet, but it also shouldn’t be crumbly).
Form batter into a large, flat disc on the parchment paper, pressing with your fingers as needed. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, until golden brown on top. Cool for 15 minutes before cutting — we sliced the disc into eight even pieces the way you would a pie.
Best if eaten in a few days, but for storage: Feel free to wrap a few baked scones in plastic and freeze them for later. Kendra says when you pull them out and reheat them, they’re as close to fresh as you can get without having to break out the butter. I haven’t tried this yet, but we have four or so scones in the freezer waiting to be work snacks soon.