My first kitchen job was working the early early morning shift at a small bakery. I would come in at 3:00 am to make and bake muffins and scones each day. Since then, my family loves when I make my version at home. Sometimes, they split them and layer the inside with chicken or turkey for a decadent sandwich. So, for an all-in-one this past Easter, I added shredded sharp cheddar and diced ham. (Photograph by my brother, Matt) —Erin Jeanne McDowell
Sift the flour, salt, and baking powder into a large bowl. Add the butter, and toss to combine. Using your hands, shingle the butter (press each cube between your palms to flatten and make it smaller). Continue to do this until the butter is well combined (the majority of the butter should be pea-sized, though I like to keep some pieces larger for taller scones).
Add the ham, cheese, and chives. Toss to combine. Make a well in the center of the bowl. Add the yolks and cream into the well. Use your hands to mix the mixture until it is well combined and has formed a shaggy mass. Do not overmix.
Chill the dough for 10-15 minutes. Form the dough into small spheres with your hands (do not over-handle). Place the scones onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Press down slightly.
Egg wash the scones well. Garnish with a sprinkling of cheddar cheese. Bake the scones in a 350 degree oven until risen and evenly browned, about 12-15 minutes. Let cool or eat warm.
I always have three kinds of hot sauce in my purse. I have a soft spot for making people their favorite dessert, especially if it's wrapped in a pastry crust. My newest cookbook, The Book on Pie, came out on November 10th, 2020, and my pie merch collaboration with Food52 is out now too: https://food52.com/shop/merchants/manifest-food52/food52-x-erin-mcdowell