With the risk of sound liking a broken record: it's fall. It’s finally upon us, the official season of everything cinnamon-spiked, orangey red tinted and quite simply, infinitely ~cozy~. Too-big sweaters that protect you from the crisp breeze, steaming mugs of something delicious that seep warmth into your fingertips and boots that remind you of the season with the friendly crunch of leaves.
The underlying greatness of this season? Coziness: an appreciated but seriously under acknowledged commodity that’s gonna get take center stage today. It all starts from the writing of this post. As I type, tucked in the corner of a dimly lit coffee shop, soft Norah Jones notes accompany my keyboard clicks, a fuzzy sweater’s too-long sleeves just cover my palms and a steaming latte begs me to take a quick writing break for a sip. Don’t mean to brag, but I’m pretty good at this whole coziness thing.
Anyway, now that I’ve set the tone (perhaps a bit aggressively?? Sorry loves, bear with me) I have a recipe that embodies this mindset. Soft and crumbly pastry? Check. Toasty Hazelnuts? Check. Coziness? Heck yes.
These scones also happen to be vegan, so bonus for animal-free pastry-lovers out there. I gotchu. This recipe is, like most recipes on my site, ridiculously simple to take from start to finish. These just require that bit of temperature awareness (chilled fat) to make sure that they achieve maximum crumbly-deliciousness.
Toasty and golden, they can be served warm on their own. Or, you can upgrade and make a lovely little glaze out of powdered sugar and a splash of strong coffee and drizzle away. These are best served straight from the oven or reheated later with maybe a dollop of ice cream?? (idk, just guessing on that one)
So, here’s to warm scones, here’s to fall and here’s to coziness.
Toasty Hazelnut Espresso Scones (recipe adapted from here)
0.5 cup unsweetened almond milk (or milk of choice)
0.75 cup strong brewed coffee (hazelnut, if you’re feelin’ extra fancy)
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
0.33 cup Earth Balance sticks (or butter if not vegan)
3 tablespoons sugar
1.25 cups whole wheat flour
0.75 cup all purpose flour
2 tablespoons baking powder
0.25 teaspoon salt
1 cup finely ground hazelnuts
0.5 teaspoon ground nutmeg
0.5 cup chopped hazelnuts, toasted
Optional coffee glaze:
Strongly brewed coffee
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper, set aside.
2. Combine almond milk, apple cider vinegar, coffee and vanilla extract. Set aside.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together Earth Balance and sugar. Set aside in the fridge.
4. In another bowl, whisk together flours, baking powder and salt. Mix in ground hazelnuts and nutmeg.
5. Working quickly, add Earth Balance mixture and combine with hands until mixture JUST resembles coarse crumbs. The less you handle the dough, the cooler it stays and the less the gluten will form, resulting in a flakier and more delicate pastry.
6. Add coffee mixture and mix until just combined. Fold in toasted hazelnuts. Dough should be dry and a bit clumpy.
7. Portion dough into quarter cup amounts and place on prepared baking sheet. Press down slightly. Sprinkle with a bit more sugar, if you'd like.
8. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, until golden brown around the bottom and the top is firm.
9. While they bake, make glaze by combining enough powdered sugar and coffee so that it's drippy, but thick enough that it doesn't just flood the scones.
10. Let cool slightly before removing from baking sheet. Serve warm, or let cool a bit more and drizzle glaze on top.
Have a scone, crunch ~all~ the leaves and let’s raise a hot mug of cider to the beginning of fall.