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Apricot Swirl Scones

Arlene Burnett, Kitchen Mailbox columnist

I say this every year: Selecting my favorite Kitchen Mailbox recipe is more difficult than finding a Christmas present for my husband. If I could, I would choose just about every recipe sent to me, but I can't. So my choice is Apricot Swirl Scones sent in by Joyce Yanchak-Green of Houston, Pa.

Apricot Swirl Scones

  • Filling:
  • 3/4 cup (4 ounces) dried apricots
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • Two 2-inch strips lemon peel, no pith
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Dough:
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup 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, salt and butter 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 addition. 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

Thursday, January 02, 2003

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