Imagine yourself enjoying Parisien quality savory scones that you made yourself and can bake fresh from your freezer any time you desire? That is what I found in this recipe out of the gorgeous new Bouchon Bakery Cookbook by Thomas Keller (The French Laundry) and Sebastien Rouxel (Executive Pastry Chef at Bouchon, Yontville).
I went to the Bouchon Bakery in Beverly Hills recently thinking I was croissant bound. I was however turned around by the sight of Bacon, Cheddar and Chive Scones in the case. Everything promised in the name was in every divine bite. I am enjoying the moment. I am deciding I am going to learn what I need to know to recreate these at home. I don’t have to look any further than my nose. The cookbook is on the counter and hallelujah, they’ve included the bacon, cheddar (and chive) scones.
May I just say this book is a truly a gift for the intermediate baker who wants to try their hand at sophisticated bakery goods and is willing to read and follow instruction from these masters. The recipes are wonderful but they do take time and sometimes equipment, especially a stand mixer with a paddle attachment. I have not found better instructors.
Ingredient measurements are listed by both volume and weight in grams. I had great success and much confidence in weighing everything to the gram with my inexpensive digital scale. And I feel so smart and European. If you love to bake, I highly recommend buying a digital scale as they can be had for under $25.
* I already had a handsome Wisconsin orange cheddar on hand. Next time I might try Kerry Gold Dubliner white cheddar and cutting the refrigerated scones into smaller round shapes before the freezing part.
Bacon Cheddar Scones
*Adapted from The Bouchon Bakery Cookbook
makes 12 large rectangular scones
All-Purpose flour 3/4 cup + 1 teaspoon flour (107grams)
Cake flour 1 1/2 cups + 1/2 Tablespoon (196g)
Baking Powder 1 1/2 + 1/2 teaspoons (8.1g)
baking soda 3/8 teaspoon (1.6g)
Granulated sugar 2 tablespoons + 3/4 teaspoon (27g)
Kosher salt 1 1/4 teaspoons (3.6g)
Cold unsalted butter 4.7 ounces (132g)
cut into 1/4 “ pieces
Heavy Cream. Plus 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon (71g)
additional for brushing
Creme Fraiche 1/4 cup + 2 1/2 tablespoons (69g)
Applewood smoked bacon- about 4 slices (340g)
(cooked, drained and cut into 1/8” pieces) (77 grams cooked weight)
Grated white cheddar cheese 2 cups (144g)
Grated white cheddar 1/2 cup (36g)
Minced chives 1/4 cup (10g)
Freshly ground black pepper
Electric stand mixer, sheet pan, parchment paper or Silpat, plastic wrap, grater, room in your freezer to lay a pan with the scones.
Time needed: at least 4.5 hours from start to finish baked good.
- Place the all purpose flour in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted wih the paddle attachment. Sift in the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda andd sugar and mix on the lowest setting about 15 seconds to combine. Then pulse in the salt.
- Add the cold butter pieces and on the lowest setting (to keep the flour from flying out of the bowl) pulse to begin incorporating the butter. Increase the speed to low and mix for about 3 minutes to break up the butter and incorporate it into the dry mixture. If any large pieces of butter remain, stop the mixer and break them up by hand, and mix until just incorporated. (*many scone recipes are OK with larger chunks of butter, not this time or this recipe.)
3. On low mix, slowly pour in the cream. Then add the creme fraiche and mix for about 30 seconds, until all of the dry ingredients are moistenend and the dough comes together around the paddle. Scrape down the side and bottom of the bowl and paddle and pulse again to combine. Add the bacon, 2 cups (or 144gram of cheddar cheese as well as the chives. Pulse to incorporate.
4. Mound the dough on the work surface and using the heel of your hand or a pastry scraper, push it together. Place the dough between two pieces of plastic wrap and using your hands press it into a 7×9” inch block, smoothing the top. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 2 hours, until firm.
5. Make room in your freezer. Line a sheet pan with a silpat or parchment paper. cut the block of dough lengthwise in half and then cut each half crosswise into 6 rectangles (70g each). Arrange them on the prepared sheet pan, leaving space between them. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze until frozen solid at least 2 hours but preferably overnight.
*The scones can remain in the freezer for up to 1 month. (This is the genious part) Once frozen, you can transfer them to a plastic bag and remove them individually to bake as needed.
6. Preheat the over to 350F. Arrange the frozen scones 1 1/2 inches apart on a parchment lined sheetpan. Brush the tops with cream and sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 up of cheese and black pepper. Bake for 33-36 minutes until golden brown. Set the sheet on a cooking rack and cool completely.
The scones are best the day they are baked, but they can be stored in a covered container for 1 day.
If you have a convection oven, now is the time to use that setting as scones baked in a convection oven will have slightly higher rise and even more color. Preheat your convection oven 325 and bake 24-27 minutes.
*Bouchon recommends Hobb’s Applewood Smoked Bacon. I used Trader Joe’s Uncured Applewood Smoked Bacon.