Cheddar and Chive Scones
When I was very casually and very occasionally blogging a couple of years ago, I came up with these scones to use up chives. They’re delicious and my go-to quick bread recipe. They’re hearty enough for a winter stew, the flavor is amazing, and they freeze beautifully. The only problem was that I had taken some not so fantastic pictures, so this post needed some updating.
I couldn’t delete all the pictures though. Like this one of my love chives.
That’s what we call them since a month after my husband and I got married, we bought some little plastic mini-greenhouses and seed pellets just to see what happened if we tried growing some herbs from seed.
Seven years, and two moves later Ten and a half years, and four moves later, we still have our love chives.
About the ingredients…
But on to the scones. These scones aren’t full of oatmeal, or coconut oil, or unicorn dust, but they are delicious. And I’ve used them to help my daughter become a better eater.
When she was two and I was first making these, she refused to eat cheddar cheese. I have no idea why, but it was a very strongly held conviction of hers, despite the fact that she would inhale pieces of aged gouda or brie. These got her to realize that sharp cheddar cheese is, in fact, pretty awesome.
More recently, she turned her nose up at ALL small green things on her plate. So, we went outside, looked at the chives, talked about what they are, and munched on one. Now she grabs a chive to chew when we go outside, and she has no problem seeing little bits of green in her scones anymore.
If you can, grate the cheese yourself instead of buying the pre-grated stuff. It just tastes better, plus it doesn’t have wood pulp (cellulose) added like the bagged stuff does. You can use skim or reduced fat milk if that’s what you have, but whole milk is – of course – way better.
Let’s get started!
Dump the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
Now, grab your really cold butter, cut it in cubes, and using a pastry cutter (or a fork if you don’t have one, or a food processor if you enjoy doing dishes), cut the butter into the flour mixture until it looks like tiny pebbles or coarse sand. You might have a few pieces about the size of a pea, but you want most of the butter to be pretty well incorporated into the flour.
Now here’s where it gets fantastic. Toss the cheese onto your shaggy dough.
Then add your chives.
And give it a stir.
At this point, the dough is very crumbly and dry, so we’re going to add milk to it. I highly recommend whole milk. We want to add enough milk so that almost all of the flour clings together but not so much that it’s really soggy (we don’t want no soggy scones here). So, if you have tons of loose flour after adding the initial 3/4 cup, add another 2 tablespoons.
Next, dump the very shaggy dough onto a work surface (or just use your parchment lined cookie sheet if you want to win the “how few dishes can I do?” contest. And who doesn’t want to win that?)
Now you have a choice. I like making small scones because I feel like I getting seconds, and that fools me into thinking I’ve had two, when really I’ve just had one. You can divide the dough into two balls for mini-scones or just one for larger scones. Your call.
But you want to press the dough blobs into discs about 3/4″ thick.
Next, you’re going to cut the dough into wedges and then slightly pull the wedges away from each other. If you’re making really big scones, you’ll want to cut them into eight pieces (cut in quarters and then each quarter should be cut in half).
If you’re making mini-scones like I do, you’ll cut them into six pieces.
Now, if you’re planning ahead and have freezer space (I have neither), pop these in the freezer for about 10 minutes. It’ll make them even flakier, but you will probably need to add a few minutes to the bake time.
Or you can just leave them in the freezer until they’re solid, pop them in a bag, and keep them for later. They bake up beautifully in about 30 minutes after being frozen.
But we’re going to go straight and and pop the scones into our pre-heated oven.
And then we’re going to eat them all up.
Yield: 8 big scones or 12 minis
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: about 22 minutes
Total Time: about 45 minutes
Cheddar and Chive Scones
Flaky, cheesy, perfect scones.
2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 tsp. sugar
4 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small cubes
1 c. coarsely grated sharp cheddar cheese
1/3 c. snipped fresh chives
3/4 c. + 2 tablespoons milk
1. Preheat the oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with parchment.
2. Whisk together the dry ingredients.
3. With a pastry cutter (or a fork), work the butter into the dry ingredients until it's sandy looking but some of the butter remains in larger pieces.
4. Mix in the cheese and chives until evenly distributed.
5. Add milk, stirring to combine. If there are crumbs in the bottom, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of milk.
6. Scoop the ball of dough out of the bowl and cut it in half. Roll or pat each half into a circle and cut each circle into 6 pieces. King Arthur says to roll the dough into 1 7" circle and cut into 8 pieces, but I wanted slightly smaller scones.
7. Pop the scones into the oven for about 22 minutes, or until they're golden brown. Remove and cool in the pan. Serve warm or at room temperature.
How to Freeze
These scones freeze beautifully - just pop them in the freezer after rolling and cutting. Put the scones into a bag, and pull out as desired. Cook for about 30-35 minutes at 425 until golden brown.
Adapted from King Arthur Flour's Cheddar, Chive, and Bacon Scones.