Get'em While They're Hot: Corn-Cherry Scones

Lately I've been spending a lot of time online browsing the Los Angeles Times food section; there are just so many wonderful recipes to be found in the archives and I never get tired of the site. I recently came across a Culinary SOS column from 2004 that I somehow missed when it was first published. A reader requested the recipe for the corn-cherry scones from the Cheeseboard Collective in Berkeley. Never mind that I've never been to the Cheeseboard Collective or tasted these scones before. They sounded delicious and I knew I had to give the recipe a try.

Unlike most of the scone recipes that I make regularly, these scones do not include any heavy cream. The ingredients are flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, sugar, cornmeal, cold butter, dried cherries, and buttermilk. Normally I like to shape my scones into wedges, but this batter was quite loose and I could see that I was going to have some difficulty trying to shape these. Instead, I used a #16 ice cream scoop to portion out the dough, and I ended up with 19 round scones.

Tom and I tried a scone shortly after it came out of the oven, while it was still warm. It was really, really delicious. It was tender and light, with a very interesting crunchy texture from the stone ground cornmeal that I used. The corn flavor was quite pronounced and a nice change of pace from the fruity and chocolate scones that I usually make.

The next morning, I took the remaining scones to work. When I tasted one, I was disappointed to discover that the texture was no longer tender, which reduced the tastiness quotient of the scone considerably. Apparently the twelve hours the scones spent on the kitchen counter overnight was long enough for them to become stale. The toughened texture probably could have been remedied if I had rewarmed my scone in a toaster oven or microwave before eating it. Still, in the future, I will be sure to only make these scones when I can serve them freshly made.

Recipe: "Corn-Cherry Scones," from the Los Angeles Times Culinary SOS Column, January 21, 2004. Also available in The Cheese Board Collective Works: Bread, Pastry, Cheese, Pizza.