Fresh Cranberry and Chestnut Gingerbread Scones

30 Dec

These are gorgeous. I had to share them with you quickly before the festive season is over and they are kind of irrelevant.

I bought a punnet of fresh cranberries just before Christmas because I had never seen or tried fresh ones before. When I got them home I was sort of unsure about what to do with them. Cranberry sauce was too boring, I wanted something where you can taste the cranberry in its natural state and feel the texture.

I saw Beth Michelle’s recipe for dried cherry and chocolate gingerbread scones and knew straight away my fresh cranberries had a destiny at last.  The chestnuts were a must to give it extra Christmasiness and I livened the whole thing up with lots of freshly grated orange zest. We are in Andalucia after all.

I used a mixture of spelt flour and plain flour for these but you can just use plain flour if that’ s all you have. You can also substitute dried cranberries for the fresh, you won’t get that  amazing contrast of sourness with the sweet gingerbread but I’m sure it will still be delicious. Walnuts would be nice instead of the chestnuts if they are difficult to get but don’t miss out the orange zest.

Cranberry & Chestnut Gingerbread Scones

Makes about 12 scones. Adapted from Beth Michelle

Prep time: 10 mins Cooking time: 25 mins

  • 300 gr (2 cups) flour, I used 175 gr spelt flour & 125 gr plain flour
  • 85 gr (1/2 cup) brown sugar
  •  1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp powdered ginger
  • 1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • a pinch of salt
  • 120 gr (8 tbsp) cold butter, cut into cubes
  • 55 ml (1/4 cup) milk, I used soya milk
  • 4 tbsp molasses/miel de cana/date honey
  • 1 egg
  • the zest of 1 orange
  • 200 gr fresh cranberries
  • 75 gr peeled chestnuts, roughly chopped

Preheat the oven to 180 C and line  a baking tray with baking paper.

In a bowl, mix together the flours, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg & salt. I use a balloon  hand whisk, I think it makes things lighter.

Add the cold butter cubes and the flour mixture to a food processor and pulse until the butter is the size of peas.

In a large bowl whisk together the milk, molasses, egg and orange zest until well combined.

Add the flour mix to the wet ingredients along with the cranberries and chestnuts. Mix together until just combined and a ball of dough is formed. Do not overmix or your scones will be tough.

Flour your worksuface and tip the dough out. Gently shape into a circle about 1 inch thick. Cut out circles using a 3 inch cookie cutter or chefs ring, rubbing the ring in the flour each time to stop them sticking. You will have to reshape the off cuts to get the last couple.

Put them directly on the baking paper on the tray, do not push them down to flatten them. Gently brush the tops with a little milk and bake for 20 – 25 minutes until the tops are golden & cracked and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Serve warm or at room temperature, if you can wait. Store in an airtight container, not in the fridge.

They are light, crumbly, soft and sweet with a sharp hit of cranberry every now and again that is just heaven….

Happy New Year Everyone!!


21 Responses to “Fresh Cranberry and Chestnut Gingerbread Scones”

  1. Beth Michelle December 30, 2011 at 5:42 pm #

    I love you adaptation of the scones! Yours are beautiful and I can just imagine how yummy the chestnuts and fresh cranberries are! Hope you had a wonderful holiday. Happy New Year!!!!

  2. Chica Andaluza December 30, 2011 at 5:44 pm #

    Natalie they look amazing. I have one punnet of fresh cranberries that I bought in Gib still in the freezer and will probably do a merienda for Los Reyes. These would be perfect! Hope you had a wonderful Christmas….and a very Happy New year to you 🙂

  3. Tes December 30, 2011 at 5:44 pm #

    Those scones look so lovely. So fresh and vibrant 🙂 Happy New Year 🙂

  4. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide December 30, 2011 at 7:53 pm #

    These look great, and we always buy a few extra bags to freeze, because you can’t find them most of the year. Other fruit you can at least find frozen, I know, I know… But cranberries forget it!

  5. Steph@stephsbitebybite December 30, 2011 at 8:02 pm #

    Total drool! The flavors in these scones sound amazing! It’s like a bowl full of holiday all poured in to one delectible treat!

  6. spree December 30, 2011 at 9:56 pm #

    I’ve nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award.

  7. ashley December 30, 2011 at 9:57 pm #

    Great idea for the scones! I will definitely try those today!! thanks!

  8. peasepudding December 30, 2011 at 10:30 pm #

    My goodness, I want these now! I was going to make scones today as we have double fresh from the farmer, will have to make these instead

  9. tiffany December 31, 2011 at 1:06 am #

    These could never be irrelevant!!!! They are so lovely! And I heart that you used spelt!!!

  10. ceciliag December 31, 2011 at 1:32 am #

    I never know what to do with cranberries either, tho soon i am going to make the cranberry … um.. cordial.. these look great.. I might experiment a little.. Happy new Year!! c

  11. magicofspice December 31, 2011 at 1:48 am #

    What beautiful flavors…they look delicious!
    Happy New Year!

  12. chefdominique December 31, 2011 at 6:28 am #

    They look delicious :-).

  13. Kate Abbott - Clifton Kitchen December 31, 2011 at 9:52 am #

    hmmmmmm…….these look yummy. Thanks for your kind thoughts and New years wishes. May 2012 be everything you can imagine. One more thing, did you manage to get to Cape Town as planned?
    Kind thoughts
    Kate xx

    • foodblogandthedog December 31, 2011 at 11:23 am #

      We are going on the 6th Feb for 3 weeks, I’m so excited!! We have a culinary journey of the Western Cape planned and I am going to do a Top Ten of restaurants with vegetarian food when I get back, if I ever come back that is!!

  14. ediblesubstance December 31, 2011 at 3:53 pm #

    mmmm they look lovely!

  15. Three Well Beings January 2, 2012 at 6:37 pm #

    What a great way to use fresh cranberries. I agree with you about cranberry sauce. I only made fresh cranberry sauce once. It just didn’t seem worth the effort, but every time I see the fresh berries I feel a little sad that I take such little interest. This is a great recipe and very unusual–I like the unexpected when I serve something as traditional as a scone! Debra

  16. tiffany January 2, 2012 at 6:51 pm #

    Just stopping by again to say HAPPY NEW YEAR! HUGS!!!

  17. sarah January 4, 2012 at 7:43 am #

    Oh these really are gorgeous! And they sound fantastic. Hope you had a wonderful New Years weekend!

  18. Caroline January 4, 2012 at 9:10 pm #

    How am I just seeing these now!?! What a perfect holiday dessert. These sound and look incredible, Natalie. Happy New Year. 🙂


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