Sunflower Seed and Dried Fruit Scones

Sunflower Seed and Dried Fruit Scones

I’m only calling these “Scones,” because I like the way that sounds.  I’m like l’Academie Française.

Essentially, this recipe is a cross between a biscuit and a muffin.  It’s light like a biscuit-muffin, shaped more like a biscuit (or even a scone).  But, it’s NOT dry.  It’s slightly moist, crumbly, and slightly sweet – with a teensy crunch from the sunflower seed addition.  Note: it does have peanut butter.  I added it for the flavor and its binding properties (I altered a tried-and-true muffin recipe that used banana purée as a binder, but… alas.  No bananas ANYWHERE) and seriously – because I LOVE PEANUT BUTTER.  Way too much.  If you can’t eat it, don’t like it, or love alternatives, use another butter instead.  Like: Almond.  Or Sunflower seed.  Or your mom.

Eesh.  Should NOT have said that.

Sunflower Seed and Dried Fruit Scones

The recipe also calls for dried fruit.  I used apricots and cherries, because that’s what I have.  I’m still going through a big bag of *each* that I bought at Costco.  I still haven’t figured out if it was a good purchase or not.  If I had raisins and/or cranberries – i would have used that.  Or even figs and cherries/blueberries… maybe???  I feel like whatever the choice – try to use two types of fruit: one with a richer flavor (like cherries, figs, raisins, etc.) and one with a lighter flavor (like apricots, blueberries?, cranberries, etc.).

Because I’m lazy, I mixed all the dried ingredients in one bowl, all the wet ingredients in another, combined the two – AND THEN preheated the oven.  The laziness is intentional, by the way.  When chia seeds are used as an egg replacer in recipes, it’s pretty typical to have it engage with some water about 5 minutes so that it congeals and forms a happy gel.  I didn’t do that.  Because… the chia seeds are ground.  They allow you a little more kitchen freedom, if you will.  When chia seeds are ground, you can mix them (dry) right into the *dry* ingredients, and then mix the wet ingredients into that.  WHEN you do this, though – make sure to let the dough for whatever you’re making SIT for a few minutes to allow some sort of adhering to take place.  It’s a good thing.  But – be warned: don’t let it sit for too long.  It just seems gross, and you don’t want it to dry out and form a terrible lumpy mess of goop.

On the lighter side, here’s the recipe.  Without the goop.  Hope you’re still hungry!

Sunflower Seed and Dried Fruit Scones

Sunflower Seed and Dried Fruit Scones

1 cup all purpose flour (use whole wheat or spelt, if you have it)
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds, finely ground
2 Tablespoons ground chia seeds
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup dried whole apricots, diced (or another dried fruit)
1/4 cup dried whole cherries, diced (or another dried fruit)
1/4 cup oil – melted (I used coconut), plus additional teaspoon or so oil to grease baking pan
2 Tablespoons smooth peanut butter – melted (or another butter)
3/4 cup “milk” (I used almond milk)
2 teaspoons molasses
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar (or apple cider vinegar)

Directions: in a large mixing bowl, combine – flour, ground sunflower seeds, ground chia seeds, baking powder, baking soda, cocoa powder, salt, and cinnamon.  Stir in dried fruit.  In a small bowl, combine – oil, peanut butter, milk, molasses, vanilla extract, and vinegar.  Stir until smooth.

Next, stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients just until combined.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (or 204.444 degrees Celsius – EXACTLY).

Grease an 8″ x 8″ metal pan with oil (I used somewhere around one and a half teaspoons).  Scoop batter (1/4 cup to 1/3 cup size) onto WET HANDS and form into a ball.  Place on greased pan and press down slightly with palm.  Repeat until all batter is used and pan is full of lightly pressed disks of uncooked biscuit-muffin dough.

Bake for 15-20 minutes (or until tops are golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean).  Allow to cool for 10 minutes.  And enjoy!

Sunflower Seed and Dried Fruit Scones

Note: I used a metal pan, because it yields a better crust, but feel free to use another type of baking pan (or dish).

There’s also a chance that your scones will have little green flecks in them the day after – it’s not mold (assuming your sunflower seeds were good to start out with!), it’s a chemical reaction.  For more info, click here.

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