Yes, you read that title right. Blood Orange Double Chocolate Scones. Yum. Yum. YUM!
Again, this past week I asked my Facebook page fans to vote on which scone they wanted to make, and Orange Chocolate scones won by a couple of votes. The tie-breaker suggested the genius idea of using blood oranges, and another follower suggested dark chocolate, another fantastic idea. (But really–is there anything besides dark chocolate?) What resulted from these votes and ideas was absolute deliciousness.
So I was very excited to try my hand at these, using fresh oranges and the darkest cocoa powder I had. You literally use all but the pith (white part) and membranes of the orange in this recipe. You use the zest, the carpel (the juicy, fruity membranes), and the juice. This is a much more intensive recipe than I usually make due to the fresh oranges, but oh, so worth it. I do hope you find the time to try it, as I’ve received overwhelmingly positive feedback from everyone who has tried these.Yield: ~24 medium scones
Prep time: 45-60 minutes
Chilling time: 15 minutes
Baking time: 20-25 minutes
1) Zest all five blood oranges, keeping the zest of 4 oranges separate from the zest of the 5th orange. Set both aside.
2) Using a sharp knife, cut the remaining peel off the orange, removing all the pith (white bits). Over a measuring cup, cut the juicy bits (carpel) out of the orange, leaving the membrane intact and in your hand. Repeat until all you have in your hand is the membrane and any attached pith. Squeeze the membrane together to get as much of the juice out of it as possible. You should have a measuring cup full of carpel and any orange juice that has dripped out while cutting. Repeat with the other four oranges. On the fifth orange, which will be used for the butter, set aside the carpel in a separate bowl, but use the juice for the main recipe. Set aside.
3) In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, salt, baking powder, unsweetened dark cocoa powder, and orange zest. Whisk to mix and set aside.
4) Add the honey and vanilla extract to the orange juice and whisk to mix.
5) Add the chopped butter to the dry ingredients and work in with pastry blender. Some pea-sized chunks are okay.
6) Add the chocolate chips to the dry ingredients and toss to mix.
7) Add the blood oranges to the dry ingredients and toss to mix.
8) Add the honey-orange juice-vanilla paste mixture to the dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon.
9) Add heavy whipping cream until you have a slightly wet dough (about 1 cup).
10) Grease a 1/4-cup measuring scoop with oil and use to scoop out dough onto a parchment lined baking sheet, about two inches apart.
11) Sprinkle the scones with pearl sugar or coarse sugar.
12) Freeze for 15 minutes.
13) Preheat oven to 425ºF while the scones are in the freezer.
14) Bake on a parchment-lined baking sheet for 20-25 minutes or until dry on top and a cake tester (or toothpick) comes out clean.
15) While the scones are baking, take your softened butter and remaining orange carpel and combine along with the zest using a paddle attachment in a stand mixer. Mix for several minutes or until the butter is well mixed. Some juice may leak out, so just scoop out the orange butter and pour off the juices. Store butter at room temperature to keep it spreadable.
16) When scones are done, allow to cool on the baking sheet for five minutes, then remove to a cooling wire and allow to cool completely. Serve with the orange butter.
I heard no complaints about this batch of scones. In fact, I heard overwhelmingly positive things about them–even from people who were a little wary of fresh oranges in a baked good. Trust me, these are tasty. Hubby and I had to exercise all our self-control to only split a scone. Okay, we split two. But we had to–I had to try one warm and one cool. It’s only right… This is on one of the rare scone recipes that we each ate a full scone. It really was that good. And the butter…mmm. It’s truly the perfect complement to the rich dark chocolate in this scone.