Cherry-Orange Cream Scones with Blood Orange Caramel Sauce

adapted from Bon App├ętit

Breakfast | Yield: 12 wedges
Prep time: 30 min | Cook time: 15 min | Total time: 45 min

Using the wrong amount of flour can be the difference between light, fluffy scones and dense, hard ones so make sure to measure your flour the right way: fluff it with a spoon and then lightly spoon it into your measuring cup, finally use a knife to level it off.

Ingredients

Orange Caramel Sauce

  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup fresh blood orange juice (about 2 oranges)
  • 1/2 tsp. grated blood orange peel

Scones

  • 2 cups flour*
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 5 oz. (about 1 cup) dried tart cherries
  • 1 tbsp. grated orange peel
  • 1 1/4 cups whipping cream or heavy cream
  • 1 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted (optional)

*I substituted 1 cup of all purpose flour with whole wheat pastry flour. I could tell the scones didn’t rise as much as they were supposed to but otherwise they were perfectly fine.

Orange Sugar Topping

  • 1/4 cup to 1/3 cup turbinado sugar (to taste)
  • 1 tbsp. grated orange peel

Process

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees (F).
  2. First make the caramel; this can be made a day ahead of time. Add sugar and water to a small heavy-bottomed saucepan. Cook over medium heat; stir only until sugar is dissolved, then let the mixture come to a boil. If there are any sugar crystals on the sides of the pan try to wipe them out with a wet paper towel.
  3. Boil mixture until it starts turning brown, about 8 minutes. Turn the heat down to medium-low and continue to cook until the mixture turns a deep golden caramel, about 1-3 minutes more. DO NOT STIR.
  4. Very slowly pour the orange juice down the side of the pan. Be careful, the mixture will bubble and steam. Stir in the grated orange peel. Stir until the caramel is smooth. Remove from heat and let cool. If making this ahead of time, store the caramel in a container at room temperature. Gently heat it up over low heat or in the microwave for about 30 seconds right before serving.
  5. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir in cherries and orange zest.
  6. Add cream and stir just until the dough starts sticking together. Turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead very gently until it holds together in a ball. The less you handle the dough, the better these scones will be. Form the dough into a 10-inch round, 1/2-inch thick disk. Slice into 12 wedges. Transfer the wedges to a large baking sheet, spaced at least an inch apart.
  7. Add the sugar and orange peel to a small bowl and mix together with your fingers.
  8. Brush the tops of the scones with the melted butter and sprinkle the orange sugar on top.
  9. Bake for 15 minutes or until light golden brown. Transfer to a rack to cool slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature, with warm Blood Orange Caramel Sauce drizzled on top.

You can make these a day ahead. Let the scones cool completely and then wrap them in foil and store at room temperature until ready to serve.

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