Perfect for summer, and simply bursting with flavor, these Fresh Cherry-Almond Scones are sure-fire winners. If you enjoy fresh cherries, and you love flaky, buttery scones, this is a marriage made in heaven.
½cup(1 stick) unsalted buttercold and cut into cubes
¾cuppitted, roughly chopped fresh cherries
¼cupbuttermilkheavy cream, or milk, plus more for brushing
1tablespoonmilk or buttermilk
Sliced almondsfor garnish
Heat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
In a large bowl combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add cold butter cubes to the flour mixture and work the butter into the flour mixture, using your fingers or a pastry cutter, until the mixture resembles coarse pea or dime-size crumbs. Be careful not to overwork the mixture or the butter will soften too much and the resulting scones will not be flaky. Add the cherries and toss well. Mix together the buttermilk, amaretto, and beaten egg and then add to the flour mixture and mix until just combined, kneading lightly (but don’t overwork it).
Divide the dough in half and pat each portion into a ¾-to-1-inch thick circle. Don’t overwork the dough, as you want the butter inside to stay as cold as possible until the scones head into the oven.
Use a bench/dough scraper or knife to cut 6 wedges (like a pizza) from each round. Flip each cut scone over and place upside down on the parchment lined baking sheet (the bottoms are flatter and will look prettier as the tops of the scones), spacing a couple inches apart. At this point, the scones can be refrigerated or even frozen and baked later. Frozen scones can be baked from a frozen state; just add a little extra baking time, as needed.
Lightly brush on top of the scones (but not the sides) with a little buttermilk, milk or cream (whatever you have). Bake scones for 18 to 22 minutes until lightly golden on top. Remove from the oven and allow the scones to cool on the pan while you prepare the glaze.
Stir together the confectioners’ sugar, amaretto, and milk until smooth. If the glaze is too thin, add a sprinkle more confectioners’ sugar. Too thick, add a drizzle of milk. When scones are cool, drizzle the glaze over the tops, and immediately sprinkle some sliced almonds over each scone (you may want to glaze/sprinkle one scone at a time so the glaze doesn’t set too fast before adhering the almonds to the top). The glaze will act as a glue, and the almonds will stick to the top. Allow the glaze to set and then serve the scones at room temperature.
Cut each dough round into 8 wedges instead of 6 to yield 16 smaller scones.