Last week, I began to ease into Autumn with my maple pepper drop biscuits. But this week, it officially feels like Fall. There’s no endless summer here in England and today is proof. It’s dark and chilly, the wind storm Ali is raging outside. I’ve lit my candle, I’m drinking spiced tea, and I’ve put pumpkin scones in the oven.
…Autumn is here.
I struggle a lot with the darker days that will accompany the next 6 or so months. The darkness is creeping into the evenings earlier and earlier, and the gray skies are settling in. I love Autumn, with it’s crisp air and warm drinks, but for the last few years it’s meant the beginning of long and difficult seasons for me. The lack of sunlight and crazy short days have hit me harder in England than they ever did in Boston. If I’m not careful, the dreariness can envelope me like a fluffy blanket. I won’t emerge from my deary cocoon on the sofa until mid-spring.
This year, I’m thinking ahead and implementing some tactics to help deal with the impending gloominess. I’m figuring out ways to combat the grey days early on. Some are practical, like light therapy & vitamin D. Others are based on mindset, like focusing on the coziness of Autumn and all the wonderful things the season offers.
Like these pumpkin scones with maple cinnamon glaze.
This is an unapologetic hybrid bake. I merged my very American preoccupation with pumpkin with the quintessential British scones. These golden fluffy scones might not be your standard British scone, but they maintain the integrity of the British bake–not too rich and perfectly tender & fluffy.
Sometimes pumpkin baked goods lack a pumpkin-y flavor and taste like hints of pumpkin and spices. Not these babies. These scones are filled with pumpkin flavor. To give them that full pumpkin flavor, we cook down the pumpkin by half in a non-stick skillet or pan. Cooking off the moisture helps this recipe in two ways: it concentrates the pumpkin flavor, and it ensures that the scone mixture isn’t too wet or dense. A mixture of cinnamon, ginger, cloves, & nutmeg give the dough a heavenly scent and a little drizzle of maple cinnamon glaze send the autumnal feels over the top.
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Pumpkin Scones with Maple Cinnamon Glaze
These pumpkin scones full of pumpkin flavor and autumnal spice! There fluffy and perfect warm from the oven with a little drizzle of maple cinnamon glaze.
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour + more for dusting
- 1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into about 1/2" cubes and very cold
- 6 tablespoons powdered sugar, sifted
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 1/2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1/2 tablespoon milk
For the Scones:
Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, light brown sugar, baking powder, & baking soda. Set aside
In a small non-stick skillet or pot, combine the pumpkin, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. Heat over medium heat stirring continuously with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula until the pumpkin has reduced by half to 1/4 cup.* This will take at least ten minutes. Once reduced to 1/4 cup remove from the pumpkin from the skillet to a small mixing bowl and allow to cool slightly while you prep the rest of the scone mixture.
Toss the butter into the bowl with the flour mixture. Rub the butter into the flour until it's broken down and the mixture looks like rough cornmeal. Work quickly so as not to melt the butter.
Add the milk and vanilla to the pumpkin mixture and stir together until combined. Make a well in the middle of the flour/butter mixture and pour the wet ingredients into the middle. Using a wooden spoon stir until just combined. Scrap the dough out of the bowl onto a lightly floured surface. Knead the dough together a few times until it's relatively smooth. This dough is a little stickier than the standard scone dough because of the moisture of the pumpkin, don't worry, just work with it. Shape the dough into a disk that's about 1 1/2 inches thick.
Move the disk of dough to the parchment lined sheet pan. Refrigerate the dough for at least 20 minutes. While the dough chills, pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. This will help the dough firm up so that you can cut the scones more easily. After the dough has firmed up, remove it from the fridge and cut the disk into 6 or 8 triangle shaped scones.
Bake the scones for 14-18 minutes (less if you've made 8 scones, more if you've made 6 scones) until the scones have risen and are darker in color. Remove from the oven and let cool.
While the scones are cooling you can throw together the glaze. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar and cinnamon. Drizzle in the milk and the maple syrup and whisk together until nice and smooth.
When the scones are cool (or barely warm), drizzle with the glaze. Serve once the glaze has set. Enjoy!
*I keep a measuring cup next to the skillet as I'm stirring and periodically measure the pumpkin when it looks like it's reduced to almost 1/4 cup.