Ever tried scones with Camembert and pumpkin seeds? Well, they won’t make winter go away, but they will bring lots of comfort if the cold forces you to stay cooped up inside.
This weekend temperatures dropped to -10 F here in Toronto. My first instinct was to simply cuddle up in bed, feel sorry for myself and daydream about the Caribbean. However, I decided instead to use this as a perfect excuse to bake a nice treat for myself and my family.
I’ve loved scones ever since my first encounter with them when I lived in England. The first ones I tried were the classic sweet ones with loads of clotted cream. (Put that on your bucket list if it’s not there already!) Scones are so wonderfully versatile, and you can really make them with whatever flavor you like.
I love these savory ones in particular as the Camembert adds an amazing creaminess to the scones inside while the pumpkin seeds and the butter make them crunchy and crispy on the outside. Just as a really good scone should be. They are also really easy to make and take almost no time as you don’t need to wait for the dough to rise before you bake them.
Just mind a few simple rules and you can’t go wrong: always use buttermilk, don’t knead the dough too much and make sure the butter goes straight from the fridge into the dough so you keep the dough cold. That way you’re on your way to the best creamy crunchy scones. Enjoy with a nice cup of tea or make them a delightful addition to the next brunch you host.
Best scones with Camembert and pumpkin seeds (makes 12-14)
2/3 cup/9 oz (225 g) cold butter, cut into cubes and then back in the fridge until they go in the dough
4 cups (500g) all purpose flour
4 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups/10 oz (300 ml) buttermilk
5 oz (150 g) Camembert cheese, cut into bites
2 oz (50 g) roasted pumpkin seeds
1. Turn on the oven to 425 F (220 C). Mix flour, baking powder, salt, pumpkin seeds and Camembert in a bowl. Add the butter cubes and start mixing with your hands until the texture is like a crumble.
2. Pour in about 2/3 of the buttermilk and continue mixing with your hands. Then add the rest of the milk and assemble quickly into a smooth dough (don’t knead).
3. Place the dough on a cold surface (a stone or marble table is ideal). Press a little flat, not thin like a pancake, an inch or two is fine. Then fold over by the middle. Repeat this flattening and folding process 5-6 times. This will make the scones more fluffy when they bake. If the oven is not hot enough yet, put the dough in the fridge until it is.
4. Divide the dough into 12-14 portions and place on a baking tray. Then bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes until golden brown. Let cool for a bit and these crunchy creamy gems are ready to be served. (And they get even better if you cut them in halves and spread with nice cold salted butter.)