cheddar-dill scones

my little grocery basket yesterday evening grew heavy with an unprecedented number of dairy products: neapolitan ice cream to combat this summer heat, a can of condensed milk for my morning tea, a pack of string cheese for my inner child, and a half-pint of cream and some cheddar cheese for these scones.

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i saw ina garten make them on her show barefoot contessa, and – along with that house in the hamptons of hers – they just seemed beautiful. delicate, fresh dill flecked through dough that had pockets of melted cheese, they would be a perfect counterpart to something light and simple, like a bowl of sweet tomato soup. to be eaten perhaps at a weathered picnic table on a breezy day. maybe atop a grassy hill, with a view of the sea – gray and calm.

one can dream.

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Cheddar-Dill Scones
a hybrid of two recipes: one by Ina Garten and another (originally for lemon-glazed blueberry scones) by Tyler Florence
Makes 16 scones

4 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, divided
2 tablespoons baking powder
2 teaspoons salt {I would reduce this just a smidge next time – maybe to 1 ½ tsp.}
10 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, diced
4 large eggs, beaten lightly
1 cup cold heavy cream
1/2 pound extra-sharp yellow Cheddar, small-diced
1 cup minced fresh dill {2 1-ounce packs}
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water or milk, for egg wash

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Grease a baking sheet or line with parchment paper.
  2. Combine 4 cups of flour, the baking powder, and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Using a pastry blender or two knives in a criss-crossing motion, cut in the butter until the mixture looks like coarse crumbs. Mix the eggs and heavy cream and quickly add them to the flour-and-butter mixture. Use a fork to lightly combine, until just blended. Toss together the Cheddar, dill, and 1 tablespoon of flour and add them to the dough. Mix until they are mostly incorporated; some flour will be visible. Take care not to overmix.
  3. Using a standard (6-ounce) ice cream scoop, scoop dough onto prepared baking sheet. Brush the tops of each mound with egg wash. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the outside is crusty and the inside is fully baked.
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