From Eat This Poem by Nicole Gulotta © 2017 by Nicole Gulotta. Reprinted in arrangement with Roost Books, an imprint of Shambhala Publications, Inc. Boulder, CO. RoostBooks.com.
Almond Poppy Seed Scones
What I love most about afternoon tea isn’t the impeccable service or the petit fours, but the state of mind it promotes. Taking a break from work to steep dark tea leaves, watch cream swirl, and let your mind wander is one of life’s simplest and most necessary rituals. For a few moments in the late afternoon, bodies pause and the mind slows down, focused wholeheartedly on the task at hand: inhaling, drinking, and taking that first, hot sip.
Makes 8 scones
¾ cup buttermilk
2 teaspoons almond extract
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
1½ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
½ cup almond meal
½ cup toasted almonds, roughly chopped
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 Tablespoons poppy seeds
1 Tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
For the glaze:
½ cup powdered sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon almond extract
3 to 4 teaspoons heavy cream
Preheat the oven to 400°F, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Stir the buttermilk and almond extract together in a glass measuring cup and place in the refrigerator until ready to use. Dice the butter into small pieces and place it in a small bowl; chill for at least 15 minutes. This helps keep the butter from melting as you work.
Whisk the rest of the ingredients together in a large bowl, then scatter the butter on top. Blend using a pastry cutter or two knives, until small pieces form and it resembles coarse meal; this can take about 5 minutes. The pieces of butter don’t have to be the same size (some will be larger than others), but they should be evenly distributed throughout the flour. Pour in the chilled buttermilk; stir until the dough just comes together and forms big, crumbly clumps.
Gather the dough together with your hands and transfer it to a lightly floured cutting board; pat into an 8-inch circle. Cut the dough into 8 wedges and transfer them to the baking sheet. Bake for 16 to 18 minutes, or until golden.
To make the glaze, whisk the powdered sugar with the almond extract and cream until thick but still able to drip from the whisk. When the scones have cooled slightly, drizzle the glaze on top.
Editor’s note: Find the poem Gulotta has paired with her almond poppy seed scones by clicking Write Here, Hometown Pasadena’s place for poetry.
In Eat This Poem, Nicole Gulotta pairs 75 new recipes with 25 beloved American poets.
Forage mushrooms with Mary Oliver, then wander into your kitchen to stir creamy truffle risotto. Study the skin of a pear with Billy Collins while you bake a warm vanilla-pear crumble. And honor the devoted work of farmers with Wendell Berry while snacking on popcorn dusted with rosemary and drizzled with brown butter.
On Sunday, April 9, Gulotta will be discussing and signing Eat This Poem at Laguna Beach Books 1200 S. Coast Hwy 92651. Find event details here.