Apple Ginger Scones

Scones always satisfy the “I need something buttery and cakey…NOW!” feeling I’ll occasionally get. Actually baking a cake is just too much effort. (Let’s be honest, here.) Scones, however? They comes together for me quite easily, especially since I have a base recipe that I’ve been using for years now. I always tweak it a little bit, and over the years, I’ve been more about a moister scone over a truer and traditional drier scone.

I’ve always been an apple lover, as well; give me an apple pie for my birthday over a cake, please! (It must be because I’m an October Baby!) Macintosh will always be my favorite, that quintessential shiny red slightly tart juicy beauty. There are many debates about which apples work best for baking, and Macs can either be used by themselves or in combination with other apples, such as Pink Ladies or Honeycrisps. Some argue that Macs on their own can add moisture to a baked good, sometimes too much moisture. I’m still Team Macs, regardless! It’s my go-to for baking AND eating, and I certainly use them in my scones.

Apple Ginger Scones

I’ve made scones with ginger before, and I do love to use crystalized ginger, namely in an Orange Ginger Scone recipe that used to be on v1 of this website. However, I love to infuse the whipping cream I use in this recipe with freshly-grated ginger; it infuses the scones with a subtle – yet – omnipresent warmth. When using the crystalized ginger, you’ll get some spicy bites of ginger, but it’s not incorporated into the scone as a whole. Both methods work, but for this particular recipe, I’d rather infuse the ginger flavor throughout.

These scones are a wonderful autumn treat, for breakfast or dessert! Or, if you’re living that #workfromhome life like I am, I might eat four for lunch. I would never judge!

Apple Ginger Scones

P.S.: Goodness help me, but some scones are just too beige and not-exactly photographable. All that matters is that they taste uh-MAAAAZ-ing. Ha!

Apple Ginger Scones

(Makes 8 scones)

Ingredients:

  • 1 large Macintosh apple, peeled and cored
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar (I’ve used both white sugar and coconut sugar successfully)
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 6 tablespoons chilled butter, shredded on box grater or cubed (see Before We Get Started…)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly-grated ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream

Before We Get Started…

  • A trick I learned from my father for incorporating butter into a pastry dough is to chill or freeze your stick of butter ahead of time, then use a box grater to grate it into the flour. It makes cutting in the butter substantially easier! Grate it like you would cheese, it’s that simple.
  • Feel free to switch up and use your favorite apple here, I’m just sold on Macs!

Directions:

1.) After peeling and coring apple, divide into four even sections. Dice up three of the sections for the scone dough and set aside; thinly slice the remaining section into eight slices to place on top of the scones and set aside.

2.) Preheat oven to 400°F; line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

3.) In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and butter. Use a pastry cutter or a fork to insure that the butter is mixed into the flour; it should take on a sandy consistency. Stir in apples and mix.

4.) In a small bowl, add grated ginger and cinnamon into heavy cream and mix thoroughly. Stir into dry ingredients and combined until moistened. Inside of the bowl, use your hands to knead the dough until thoroughly combined and it holds it shape; this should take approximately one minute.

5.) Turn dough onto parchment paper-lined baking sheet and form into the shape of a circle with your hands, roughly 8″ in diameter and 1″ thick. Cut circle into eight even-sized wedges. Spread wedges apart on baking sheet. Gently press an apple slice on top of each scone. Sprinkle with additional sugar for texture, if desired.

6.) Place scones in oven and bake for 20 – 25 minutes or until lightly browned; for a moister scone, stick to closer to 20 – 22 minutes.

7.) Remove from oven and move to a cooling rack for 30 minutes. Scones will store at room temperature in an air-right container for up to 2 days.

Single-Serve Blueberry Crisps

Yet another recipe I’ve recently posted to Yoga By Candace, and I’m absolutely in love with this one!

The blueberries are absolutely bursting with flavor, the crispness and texture of the spiced oat topping adding the complementary CRISP.

I’ve gravitated more towards single-serve or smaller desserts over the years – y’all can talk smack about a mug cake all you want, I am HERE for them! – and owning a set of ramekins can help in developing – and then devouring – these recipes.

Note: I’ve made this recipe three times in the past week. I just can’t STOP! Has the fact that it’s been in the 90s for weeks with tropical humidity within this urban jungle called New York stopped me from having my oven on at 350°F?

Clearly not. Didn’t you read? I’ve made this recipe three times in the past week. 😆

Head over to Yoga by Candace for the full recipe, as well as an array of yoga, health, and lifestyle features! Or, more importantly, get your dose of Buck Buck. 🐕

Single-Serve Blueberry Crisps
Single-Serve Blueberry Crisps

Cherry Cake with Vanilla Buttercream

Off the bat, I’ll say this: It’s a “cheater cake”. Read: I added cherries to a box of Duncan Hines yellow cake mix.

We all have our Sandra Lee semi-homemade moments.

While I do love making cakes from scratch – namely, my baked cake donuts! – the simplicity of having a cake mix or two in the pantry when I have a craving is invaluable to me. I’m not the Food Police here: make your cake from scratch, buy a cake mix with 50 ingredients in it, buy an organic GF / DF cake mix, you do you! But being able to have a sweet summer treat mixed in baked in roughly 40 minutes is all I want sometimes. I don’t always want to measure things out, sift flour, and drive myself crazy in general.

Plus, when I’ve got to pit a bunch of cherries, I want to take some shortcuts elsewhere.

Cherry Cake with Vanilla Buttercream

The buttercream, though? That I’ll make from scratch. I’ve used the same proportions for YEARS, which yields a simple batch of vanilla buttercream, roughly 2 & 1/2 cups or so: 4 cups confectioners’ sugar, 2 sticks of butter, 2 tablespoons milk, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. BOOM.

Take some shortcuts for a wonderful summer dessert! Cherry season doesn’t last for too long, and we’ve got to take advantage of it!

Cherry Cake with Vanilla Buttercream

Cherry Cake with Vanilla Buttercream

(Makes two 9″ round cakes)

Ingredients:

  • 1 & 1/2 cups cherries, pitted and chopped; this amount was yielded from 1 pint of fresh cherries.
  • 1 box yellow or white cake mix of choice
    • Add eggs, water, oil, et al, in accordance to directions listed on the mix’s box.

Vanilla Buttercream:

  • 2 sticks butter, unsalted and softened for at least 30 minutes prior to use.
  • 4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

1.) Preheat oven in accordance to the directions on the cake mix box, depending on the type of cake pans being used. Oil and flour cake pans; set a round of parchment paper at the bottom of each cake pan, if possible. (There is a great tutorial here!)

2.) Prepare cherries for cake mix by pitting and chopping; the chop should be fairly uniform, but it’s okay if there are a few larger pieces of cherries. Set aside.

3. ) Combine cake mix in accordance to the directions on the box. Fold in cherries until combined.

4.) Bake cakes in accordance to the directions on the box. (Should be 25 – 30 minutes.) Test doneness by inserting a toothpick into the middle of one of the cakes; if it comes out clean, the cakes are baked. Remove from oven and place on cooling rack for 10 minutes before removing from cake pans; continue to cool cakes on rack until room temperature.

5.) For the vanilla buttercream frosting, cream butter in a large bowl on medium-low speed for 2 minutes or until light and fluffy. Adding in 1/2 cup at a time, add sifted confectioners’ sugar to the butter and continue to blend. After adding in a total of 3 cups of the confectioners’ sugar, add in 1 tablespoon of milk and the 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Beat and add in the remaining sugar. If the mix is a little dry, add in the additional 1 tablespoon of milk.

6.) Once cake has cooled, brush off any crumbs from top and sides, and cut down the top bottom layer if you have a “cake dome”. (See tutorial here.) apply an even layer of buttercream to the top of one cake, roughly 3/4 of a cup in total. Place the second cake securely on top, and use the remaining frosting for the top and sides, spreading evenly.

7.) Enjoy this cake!