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Improvised roasted butternut squash scones

I don’t know if roasted squash scones are a thing, but I had a butternut squash in the kitchen and any day is a good day for scones, so I whipped some up.

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I cut up the squash and tossed the pieces with salt, pepper, a few shakes of cayenne and a bit of oil, then roasted it until it started to brown nicely. Tip: start with a big squash because when you taste the roasted squash you’ll want to have a wee bowl of it before making the scones. I know I did and it rocked.

It seems to me that scones are best made with buttermilk but I didn’t have any so I added some lemon juice to 3/4 cup of milk and let it sit for a while. That creates a potion that passes quite well for buttermilk (try it you’ll see).

While the squash cooled I started the dry ingredients. I used a couple cups of all purpose flour. I added a generous pinch of table salt. I knew I needed some baking powder but I wasn’t sure exactly how much so I made an executive decision and used a teaspoon. I didn’t know if I should use baking soda or not. I know that baking powder is baking soda + some acid. I also know that too much baking soda can leave an aftertaste if there is no acid in the mix, but I had lemon juice mixed in with my milk so I figured ok I’ll add a half teaspoon and see what happens. Now I was making savoury scones and I didn’t know if I should add any sugar or not, so I added about just a wee bit, maybe a teaspoon. I also added some fresh coarsely ground pepper to the mix.

I learned to make scones by chopping up very cold butter into little cubes and cutting it into the flour with one of those pastry cutting tools. However, somewhere along the way I learned a little trick. Freeze half a cup (a stick) of butter and grate it with a cheese grater. Add it to the flour about a third at a time and mush it around with your fingers until the whole deal has a grainy feel about it. Works great.  I added my sorta-kinda-buttermilk and mixed it up, then added in my cooked squash. You might ask if you could boil the squash instead of roasting it and I would say you could do that if you wanted boring scones. Some people might prefer boring, I don’t know. Roasting is about a million times better.

I mushed everything together quickly, then placed the blob of scone dough on a floured cutting board. I suppose I should have rolled it out but I didn’t. I flattened it with my hand, cut it in half, put one half on top of the other and flattened it again. Then I cut the edges off with a scraper, put them on back on top and flattened it again. With my scraper I cut the dough into 8 squares and turned the squares into 16 triangles, and placed them on a piece of parchment on a cookie sheet and in the oven at 375F. If you are way more fancy-pants than me, you might use a cutter to get identical perfect shapes instead of making crude triangles, but I like crude triangles. I heard a recording of U. Utah Phillips (the Golden Voice of the Great Southwest) once on which he said, “I prefer a rude vigour to a polished banality”. Har! I baked my scones until they started browning on top and looked spectacular, about 18 minutes.

Rockin’ Good.

 

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