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We all harbor secret fantasies of moving away, starting a café, and feeding people. Every month, Sarah Kieffer from The Vanilla Bean Blog will be indulging us with stories and recipes from the Wolners, who own the Blue Heron Coffeehouse in Winona, Minnesota.
Today: If Ina Garten's and Kim Boyce's scones had a baby, this would be it.
Scones were one of the first things I learned to bake at The Blue Heron Coffeehouse. The very first Barefoot Contessa Cookbook had just come out, and we were all obsessed with Ina’s scones. Whether the scones were stuffed with ripe berries or studded with orange and chocolate, no one in town could get enough. I begged to learn how to make them, and Larry and Colleen obliged.
Somehow, I’ve been making scones for two decades now. My recipe and technique have changed a bit over the years, but each time I cut butter into flour and pour in the heavy cream, my thoughts can’t help but drift to that small, un-air-conditioned kitchen where I first learned to gently knead the dough before shaping it into triangles and brushing the tops with a bit of cream and a generous dusting of sugar.
My last visit with Colleen and Larry resulted, yet again, in scones. We went off our normal baking path, this time experimenting with buckwheat flour and jam. Both our kitchens hold a well-worn copy of Kim Boyce’s Good to the Grain, and while we love her Figgy Buckwheat Scones, we wanted to see if a more seasonal jam would work. Fig butter was switched out for Colleen’s homemade cherry jam, and 40 minutes later, spiral circles of magic emerged from the oven. It was another perfect Blue Heron breakfast.
More: If you love the combination of buckwheat and cherry, try Alice Medrich's buckwheat thumbprints.
1 cup buckwheat flour
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 ounces (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
1 cup cherry jam
Photos by Sarah Kieffer