Baking is a process of trial and error. In the case of these Meyer lemon ricotta scones, my first attempt at making them was mediocre at best. I am guessing it was partly due to my insistence on taking a photo of the dough to post on social media that by the time I got the scones into oven, the butter had softened too much and melted out during baking. If you are familiar with making scones, cold butter is the key to a flaky, light texture. Much to my dismay, the scones came out the complete opposite of what I had hoped they would be. Flat and chewy, they were a poor excuse for a scone and hardly blog worthy. Sigh.
And while I am personally a fan of the fragrant and sweet Meyer lemon, I have found that some people are not quite sure what to make of the flavor. One of those people would happen to be my husband and willing taste-tester. When I saw him slop on more jam on his scone to cut through the intense flavor of the Meyer lemon, I knew it was time to tweak the recipe.
I am relieved to report that my second attempt was a success. The addition of fresh blackberries added a burst of sweetness and color to the end result. I also made sure to not overwork the dough when kneading and, more importantly, bypassed the urge to report every move via social media to get the scones right into oven. And if you haven’t already noticed if you’ve been an avid follower of my blog, I have an addiction to ricotta and love incorporating it into baked goods. It adds a delicate and light crumb to the texture of the scones.
The scones are best served warm with lemon curd or your favorite fruit jam.
- 1 large egg
- ½ cup buttermilk
- 2 tablespoons fresh Meyer lemon juice
- ½ cup ricotta cheese (I used Calabro brand, hand-packed)
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons Meyer lemon zest
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2¼ teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup cold butter, cut into small cubes
- 1 cup blackberries, halved
- Heavy cream, for brushing the scones
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat baking mat and set aside.
- Whisk together the egg, buttermilk, and Meyer lemon juice in a medium bowl. Add the ricotta cheese and whisk until combined. There will still be a few lumps. Set aside.
- In another large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, lemon zest, and sugar. Add the butter pieces to the flour mixture and toss with a fork just until the butter is coated with flour. Using a pastry cutter, fork, or your hands, cut the butter into the flour until you have a mixture of pea-sized or slightly larger clumps of butter and flour.
- Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry ingredients and stir with a spatula until just combined. Be careful to not overwork the dough. It's okay if some of the flour isn't entirely incorporated. Gently fold in the blackberries. Turn out the dough onto a well floured space and gently knead the dough a few times. If the dough is too sticky, you can add a little bit of flour as you knead. Pat the dough down into a disk, about ½ inch thick. Cut the dough into 8 wedges or cut into rounds with a biscuit or cookie cutter.
- Transfer the scones to the prepared baking sheet and brush with heavy cream. Bake for about 20 mins, or until the scones are golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack and serve.