Gingerbread for Breakfast: Yogurt Scones

Last night, my best friend Tor and I engaged in a scheduled quarterly breakdown.  By this I mean that we've been waiting for the appropriate point in the quarter at which we can declare that we're too overwhelmed by the amount of work we have to do any of it; and so naturally, instead of settling in for a night of hard-core studying, we must have a dance party in my kitchen while baking and devouring pastries and ice cream.  

We made peppermint mocha brownies, which will appear in the next post unless I get to the pizza or cranberry crumble bars with mulling spices first (yessss, so much food in my life), in addition to these gingerbread yogurt scones.  They don't exactly follow to the theme of breakdown food (which may be characterized as may I have some butter with my cream and chocolate please), since I made them with the intention of eating them for breakfast in the coming days.   But their being healthy allowed us to justify our subsequent dessert of warm brownies with espresso ice cream.  Win-win.

It should be no secret to you at this point, since this blog is almost a year old now (oh my...), that I love ginger.  I eat hunks of the crystalized stuff while I'm waiting for my oatmeal to cook in the morning, and then proceed to stir some (read: a lot of) slices into the oatmeal once it's done.  And add them to trail mix.  And ice cream.  And plain Greek yogurt with raspberry jam and flax seeds.  And, and... Yes my mom thinks I'm gross (she also thinks I'm gross for eating the frosting off her cake, or most of the dough when I'm making cookies; so clearly she is misguided), but ginger is just so pungently sweet and spicy at the same time, like it's sparkling on your tongue; and when crystallized it also becomes soft and toothsome, like gummy candies (you should also know by now that I love gummy bears and worms).  Often the salty-sweet combination gets the Ideal Flavor Combo Award, but I like spicy-sweet even better.  If you're not as much of a fan, you could - dare I even say it - forgo the crystallized ginger in this recipe.  But I would be sad.  So, so sad.  

P.S. I adjusted the recipe below to reflect any changes I'd like to make with a second batch.  The molasses flavor wasn't strong enough, so I replaced the maple syrup I'd added to the recipe with more.  I increased the amount of sugar to compensate for the lack of maple syrup, but I didn't add too much, since I liked that they weren't incredibly sweet.  These are for breakfast, after all.

Gingerbread Yogurt Scones
adapted from here and here

1/2 c all-purpose flour (unbleached)
1/2 c white whole-wheat flour (unbleached)
3/4 c oat flour (use a food processor to grind regular rolled oats into a powder)
1 c rolled oats
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
5 tablespoons Muscovado sugar, divided
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger, plus extra for sprinkling
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons cold butter
1 large egg
3/4 c plain yogurt
1/4 c molasses
3 tablespoons milk, divided
1 teaspoon vanilla
~7 strips crystallized ginger, sliced

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

In a large bowl, mix together the flours, oats, baking soda and powder, 4 tablespoons sugar, spices, and salt.  In another smaller bowl, whisk together the egg, yogurt, molasses, 2 tablespoons milk, and vanilla.  Chop the butter into 12-ish pieces, making sure it's super cold, then cut the butter into the flour mixture.  The mixture will be crumbly and the pieces of butter the size of peas.  If you think the butter's gotten too warm, just pop the bowl into the freezer for a couple minutes.

Fold the wet ingredients into the butter-flour mixture gently.  Once there are only a few streaks of flour left, add in the crystallized ginger, adjusting the amount to suit your taste.  Mix until just combined.  On a clean surface that's been dusted with flour, dump out the dough and pat it down into a thick disc.  Cut the disk into 8 wedges, then arrange them on a sheet pan that's been covered with tin foil and buttered.  Brush the remaining 1 tablespoon of milk over the scones, and sprinkle with ground ginger and the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar.  Bake for 20-25 minutes until firm and browned.  

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