For the love of baking: Zoe Martin shares a cranberry orange scone recipe

I am that person. The one in a restaurant who looks at the dessert menu first before deciding whether or not to order a starter. I am the person who would much rather have a chocolate bar over a packet of crisps, sorry chips.

Yes, I have a sweet tooth, to which my waistline can attest, and I put it down to my genes. For example, my dad could polish off half a packet of digestive biscuits in one sitting, but he could also cycle for miles on end so that he worked them off again!

Throughout my childhood, I loved to visit my Granny’s house as there would inevitably be the chance to lick the spoon clean, god forbid nowadays, of some kind of raw cake mixture. (BTW I survived just fine!) She would always have drop scones, griddle scones, cherry cake, tea cake or shortbread on hand in a tin in the larder. The first two of which were mouth-wateringly delicious, especially with her home-made Bramble Jelly, something that I have yet to attempt to make.

So if you invite me to a potluck, or if I’m popping round to friends, I am likely going to be the one bringing something sweet – brownies, cupcakes, muffins, apple pies – you get my drift. (Good job I don’t have many gluten free friends!)

When my husband was away recently I found myself at a loose end and what better thing to do than make something? For this particular occasion I decided that scones seemed like a good idea so set off in search of the perfect recipe – Pinterest is great tool for research! I happened upon this one for Cranberry Orange Scones which looked like they might go particularly well with a cup of tea while catching up with a friend. And they did! Soft, fluffy and buttery with the perfect hint of orange (I had even added a bit more than suggested in the recipe), chewy cranberries and, actually, not overly sweet.

fullsizeoutput_7beNow that I have this recipe tested I should be able to take the basic recipe and create my own flavours. As they say, practise makes perfect!

Ingredients for the scones:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tbsp grated orange zest (from 1/2 orange)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold butter, cut into chunks
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream + 1 tbsp to brush the top
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 tbsp coarse/raw sugar to sprinkle the top, optional


Ingredients for the glaze:

  • 2/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 Tbsp freshly squeezed orange juice

How to make:

Makes 12. Preheat oven to 400˚F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

  1. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and grated orange zest. Add the butter pieces and use a pastry cutter (or 2 knives, or hands like I did) to cut the butter into the mixture until you have coarse pea-sized crumbs.
  2. Toss in the dried cranberries and stir gently to combine. Make a well in the centre and set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and 1/2 cup of heavy cream. Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and use a spatula to stir until just moistened.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a generously floured surface and pull it together into a round disk, about 3/4″ thick. (Note – it doesn’t have to be perfect, in fact it looks more home-made when uneven and rough looking!)
  5. Cut the disk into 12 equal wedges and pull apart slightly. Brush the tops of scones with 1 tbsp of heavy cream and sprinkle the top with raw sugar, if desired.
  6. Bake for 15-17 minutes until golden.
  7. Place the scones on a wire cooling rack and let cool for 15 minutes.
  8. Whisk together the powdered sugar and the freshly squeezed orange juice, adding more or less for desired thickness, and then drizzle over cranberry scones.
  9. Eat and enjoy!