Scones are life savers.

Got a crew of girlfriends coming over for afternoon coffee?  Got a couple of always-hungry, growing kids to satisfy?  Got your in-laws arriving for Sunday brunch?  Got that 4pm coffee-and-something-sweet (but not too sweet) craving?  Got that “I’m tired of boxed cereal for breakfast” feeling?  These scones are your man… or woman… or baked good.

They can be thrown together in no time, frozen for a later date, then whipped out and baked from frozen to save the day.

I’m probably going to find it hard to be friends with anyone who doesn’t like a warm, flakey scone.

Fortunately, I don’t know any of those kinds of people.

I serve them with slightly sweetened whipped cream (but if you added a dollop of Nutella as well, I wouldn’t tell).

Chocolate Hazelnut Scones

Makes 10

  • 280g plain four
  • 50g toasted and ground hazelnuts
  • 1 heaped tablespoon baking powder
  • 80g caster sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 255g cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 100ml cold buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 140g dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1 egg beaten with 1 teaspoon water for the egg wash

Put the flour, hazelnuts. baking powder, sugar and salt in a large mixing bowl and stir together until thoroughly combined.

Add the butter and rub it into the dry ingredients until you have a rubble of small pieces of butter throughout.  Add the buttermilk, vanilla and chocolate.  Toss to distribute and you’ll end up with a rather shaggy mess.

Tip the mixture onto a work surface bring it together in a pile, then press the dough flat, gather it up and do this a couple of times until it begins to come together.  Don’t over work the dough.

Press portions of the dough onto an ice cream scoop, then put these domes of dough onto a tray lined with baking paper.  Pop them in the freezer for 2 hours.  Take them out of the freezer and wrap the individual scones in plastic wrap before storing them in a ziplock bag in the freezer. They can be kept for a month.

When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 180°C.  Remove however many scones you need from the freezer.  Place them on a baking tray lined with baking paper. brush with egg wash and sprinkle with sugar.  Bake for about 30 minutes or until golden and easily lifted off the pan.

slightly adapted from here