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Sour Cherry & Walnut Scones

Scott Phillips

Yield: Yields 8 scones.

These scones have a fine, tender crumb because of the cake flour and lack of kneading. The dusting of cinnamon sugar complements the tartness of the  cherries.


  • 1/4 cup plus 3 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 4-1/2 oz. (1 cup) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 4 oz. (1 cup) cake flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. finely grated orange  zest
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 lb. (1/2 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 4-1/2 oz. (3/4 cup) dried tart cherries
  • 2 oz. (1/2 cup) walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 2/3 cup buttermilk


  • Position a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment. In a small bowl, mix 3  Tbs. of the sugar with the cinnamon.
  • In a large bowl, whisk the two flours, the remaining 1/4 cup sugar, the baking powder, orange zest, and baking soda until well blended. Cut the butter cubes into the flour mixture with a pastry blender (or two table knives) until the mixture looks like cornmeal with a few butter lumps no larger than peas. Stir in the cherries and walnuts. Add the buttermilk and stir just until no dry flour is visible; the dough will be wet and sticky.
  • Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured board and pat into a 1-inch-thick round. Cut into eight wedges. With a spatula, transfer the wedges to the baking sheet, spacing them about 2  inches apart. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar over the scones. Bake until the tops of the scones are firm to the touch and the edges and bottoms are lightly golden brown, 18 to 20 minutes. Let cool on a rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.


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Reviews (8 reviews)

  • weezi | 01/13/2021

    Made these as is for a special occasion breakfast, and they tasted delicious, especially with dollops of Crème fraîche and quince jam.

    I used a Silpat sheet instead of parchment paper, and put a second cookie sheet under the first to prevent overbrowning. I checked after 15 minutes and they were nevertheless done -- and slightly more crumbly than I would have liked. I have other scone recipes that I bake for just 12 minutes (e.g. Cranberry Tangerine Scones from Epicurious that are also fabulous and that I've made over and over).

    I will definitely make again, but next time I will check for doneness after 12 minutes.

  • DLindner | 09/11/2016

    Very good as is and also seems like it would work well with other dried fruit and/or other nuts. Some might prefer crunchier decorator sugar on the top, which I'll try next time.

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