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  • Writer's pictureLeigh

Sourdough Discard Day: Make Cherry-Almond Scone Buns

Have discard? Make some tasty treats for your family. These little pastries are a cross between a scone and a yeast bun. They are tender, have a wonderful yeasty flavor, and are filled with dried cherries. A topping of chopped almonds toasts in the oven as the buns bake, providing extra almond flavor and crunch. The buns are lightly sweetened and are great for breakfast or with tea or coffee. No, you read the recipe correctly. The buns don't require baking powder. They get their rise from the sourdough discard/starter. Nonetheless, if your discard is weak, you might want to add a teaspoon of baking powder when you add the flour to ensure you get a light bun (rather than a hockey puck). The buns won't rise much if you use only discard/starter, but don't worry. They will be light and tasty. They also will fit well in your toaster to reheat later in the week!

Sourdough Cherry-Almond Scone Buns -- Makes 10-12

1 cup of starter/discard

1/4 cup of canola oil

1/4 cup of buttermilk

1 teaspoon of vanilla

1/2 teaspoon of almond extract

1 egg

1/3 cup of dried cherries, chopped into small pieces with 2 teaspoons of sugar

1/2 cup of whole-wheat flour

1 cup of all-purpose flour

1/4 cup of butter, cut into small pieces

1/3 cup of sugar

1/2 teaspoon of salt

1/4 cup of chopped almonds

1 tablespoon of sugar, optional but good

In a large bowl, stir or whisk together until thoroughly combined the starter/discard, canola oil, buttermilk, vanilla, almond extract, and egg. Stir in the chopped dried cherries and the "chopping" sugar. In another bowl, combine the flours, 1/3 cup of sugar, and salt. Cut in the butter (I just use a fork, but a pastry blender is great) until some large and small pieces appear. Add the flour mixture to the starter/discard wet mixture and stir everything well to form a dough. The dough will be very wet. That's fine. It's supposed to be. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and drop 10-12 portions of dough (each about 1/4 cup or so, depending on how large you want your buns) on the sheet, spacing them a couple of inches apart. Moisten your hands with water and shape the dough portions into rounds, like scones or biscuits. Sprinkle the tops of the mounds evenly with the chopped almonds, pressing the almonds into the mounds a little. If you like, sprinkle the sugar evenly over the mounds. Let the buns rise for 2-4 hours, depending on the temperature of your kitchen. They should puff a little--maybe increase 25 percent of their volume. Bake the buns at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes or until light golden. Let the buns cool a few minutes before removing them to cool completely. Or eat them warm, plain or slathered with butter.

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