Monday, April 30, 2012

Cooking with the Kids

A few weeks ago I took my daughter to a local organic bakery in Ridgefield.   While I sipped a cappuccino with skim, she had a cinnamon/butterscotch scone and fell in love.   I tasted a corner, and I would have to agree that it was very, very yummy.   We bought two more scones to bring home with us, and by the weekend, my daughter was asking to go back to the bakery to get more.

I had some problems with just going back to the bakery and buying more.   For one thing, although they're really, really delicious, a cinnamon/butterscotch scone is best as an occasional breakfast treat and not a breakfast staple for a growing 11 year old girl.

Another thing, I kind of adhere to Michael Pollan's philosophy that it's OK to eat goodies, as long as you make them yourself.   Buying scones, even at an organic bakery, side-steps that rule.   Did I also mention that buying scones at an organic bakery is somewhat pricey???

So instead of just buying more of my daughter's favorite new treat, we could try making them ourselves.  I thought it would be a good lesson in baking, and following a recipe.   I proposed the idea to my daughter and she enthusiastically agreed.

I Googled "Cinnamon butterscotch scone" and came up with nadda.   I next tried "cinnamon scone" and came up with several recipes although none seemed to match the basic scone that we had gotten at the bakery.  

I realized that I'd have to start with a base recipe and adapt.   I explained this to my daughter, and thought that this would be another good baking lesson--you don't have to just slavishly follow a recipe.  

So here's the base recipe we decided to use.   The organic bakery scones had a sugar/cinnamon topping, so we thought this would be a good start.   We followed the recipe with two changes.   First we added 2 teaspoons of cinnamon to the flour mixture.  Second, we swapped out butterscotch chips for the cinnamon chips (which we couldn't find anyway).

The end result?   Not quite what we were looking for.   The overall product just wasn't as "yummy," my daughter told me.  

My own feeling was that the scones where too "caky" as opposed to "flaky."  Probably due to two things--the heavy cream and the egg.   Generally, I usually like to use buttermilk as opposed to cream in my scones and the next version of this recipe will definitely swap out the cream for buttermilk (and eliminate a lot of the fat as well).  

The cakiness was also likely do to the egg in the recipe.   I thought the egg an odd addition for a scone recipe.   I've made scones plenty of times in the past and I never added egg.   So prior to our next try, I'll do some more research again and try to find an eggless cinnamon scone recipe.

The cinnamon/sugar topping and the butterscotch chips, however, were definite keepers.  

So, my daughter and I are now on a baking mission to replicate her scones.   It's a good lesson for her to learn.   Not everything has to come out of a packaged box or be purchased.   And, if you try a recipe and it doesn't come out as planned, adapt, and try again.


  1. I use this recipe:

    The current issue of Everyday Food has a basic recipe for scones and variations. No cinnamon butterscotch, though!

  2. You might also try substituting brown sugar for white in the recipe -- like this recipe: