Make Ahead

Currant Rosemary Scones

October  1, 2014
8 Ratings
Photo by Winona Barton-Ballentine
  • Makes 8 scones
Author Notes

This was the first scone flavor we ever created at Ovenly, and it continues to be our most popular. My failed hunt to find fresh currants, which I’ve loved since I was a kid, inspired us to add dried currants to our dough. The fresh rosemary adds an herby aroma reminiscent of a summer garden. While they can easily be made in small batches, our bakers now make these in batches of many thousands at a time. Mounds of scone dough are rolled into sheet pans and then cut by hand. A lot of care (and muscle!) goes into making these scones.

Excerpted from Ovenly by Agatha Kulaga & Erin Patinkin (Harlequin Nonfiction). Copyright © 2014. Photographs by Winona Barton-Ballentine. —Ovenly

What You'll Need
  • 8 tablespoons (4 ounces) chilled, unsalted butter
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup dried currants
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 1/2 cups chilled heavy cream, plus more for brushing
  • 2 tablespoons turbinado sugar, for garnish
  1. Preheat the oven to 425° F.
  2. Cut the butter into 1/4- to 1/2-inch cubes and freeze for 10 minutes before using. Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl.
  3. Using a pastry cutter or your fingertips, quickly cut or blend the cold butter into the dry mixture until it resembles coarse meal. The butter pieces should be mostly about the size of small pebbles, but some larger pieces are okay.
  4. Using a large fork or a wooden spoon, mix the currants and rosemary into the flour-butter mixture.
  5. Stir the cream into the flour-butter mixture with a large wooden spoon or a fork until the dough begins to come together. The flour should not be fully incorporated at this point, and do not overmix.
  6. Transfer the dough and any loose floury bits to a floured countertop or pastry board/mat.
  7. Quickly knead the dough until it comes fully together, and then flatten it with the palms of your hands into a 3/4 inch-thick mound (the shape does not matter at this point). Fold the dough in half, give it a quarter turn and then flatten it again. Repeat this process 3 more times.
  8. Flour your surface once more, and then shape the dough into a 3/4 inch-thick round that is 6 inches in diameter. Use a bench scraper or a knife to cut the dough into 4 equal triangles. Then cut those in half to make 8 even triangles. Place the triangles on an ungreased rimmed sheet pan.
  9. At this point, we recommend placing the rimmed sheet pan in the freezer for 10 minutes. This will help the scones firm up and retain their shape during baking. If baking right away, brush with cream and top with turbinado sugar to finish; or if freezing, brush with cream and top with turbinado sugar just before baking.
  10. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center of the scones comes out clean. Cool the scones on a wire rack. Serve warm with butter, jam or honey.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Sugartoast
  • Celia Rodee
    Celia Rodee
  • Aaliyah Pinkerton
    Aaliyah Pinkerton
  • dianasaur
  • Babette
Erin & Agatha are owners of the celebrated wholesale bakery in Brooklyn, Ovenly. Check out their first cookbook, Ovenly: Sweet & Salty Recipes from New York’s Most Creative Bakery, on sale October 2014.

18 Reviews

Adrienne February 10, 2023
I’m going to make this recipe this weekend, but I’m wondering how to sub buttermilk for heavy cream, only because that’s what I have in my fridge. I believe I need to use baking soda instead of powder and some more butter, but I would love some help with the exact amounts.
Adrienne February 26, 2023
Update: I decided to wait until I had cream in the fridge. I made them this morning and they are FABULOUS!
Carol S. November 25, 2020
Very good and easy! Gave as gift with orange butter. Please try, you won’t be disappointed.
Ariel August 19, 2020
I make this scone recipe several times a year. It's SO GOOD, and comes together quickly. Sometimes I swap out rosemary and currants for other ingredients (like cinnamon & cinnamon chips). The base is very adaptable!
Ariel August 19, 2020
I make this scone recipe several times a year. It's SO GOOD, and comes together quickly. Sometimes I swap out rosemary and currants for other ingredients (like cinnamon & cinnamon chips). The base is very adaptable!
Molly December 5, 2016
Step 8 says to make 'a 3/4 inch-thick round that is 6 inches in diameter', but there's too much dough. Should I measure 3/4 inch thick or 6 inch diameter ? Thanks!
Sugartoast February 1, 2016
This is my "go to" scone recipe now. I absolutely love the technique, which guarantees tall scones, without having to worry about whether the leaveners are going to do their trick. I adore the rosmary currant combo, but have also had great success with 1/2 chopped candied ginger and 1 tsp ginger powder. I serve the ginger scones with meyer lemon curd, and my holiday guests are always happy.
Celia R. September 9, 2015
I made a batch if these today at our beach house. I decided to cut the scones a little smaller and got 12 triangles. These were delicious and received RAVE reviews. So much so that I'm making another batch in a few days!
appletart August 23, 2015
this results were delicious! I am trying to make a healthier version of this recipe. I'd appreciate any suggestions for substitutes for butter and/or cream in this recipe. thanks!
Aaliyah P. December 15, 2014
i made these for my moms birthday brunch this past weekend they were a huge hit!
instead of making 8 large scones i spooned the dough into muffin tins. they baked for 12 min instead of the 18-20 the recipe advises.
i paired this with my orange honey butter ( 1 stick of butter room temp, mashed together with the zest of one orange and honey to taste. spread into plastic wrap and roll into a log place in the fridge to harden )
dianasaur November 5, 2014
I had a surplus of apples and I added about a cup of chopped apples to the mix before kneading and they were a welcome addition! These were a huge hit with everyone I shared them well as myself!
Babette October 6, 2014
Pair these babies with some local strawberry jam and a frothy cappuccino and your fall morning is complete...
Sarah October 5, 2014
missing a step that tells when to add the currants and rosemary- I'm assuming before the cream?
Greenlkgrl October 15, 2014
see step 4
MSL-2302 October 4, 2014
Am I reading this wrong, or has the recipe left out the currants and rosemary? Do you fold them in with the cream or while kneading? Or is the rosemary mixed into the flour before cutting in the butter?
Celia R. December 26, 2015
See Step 4
Jamie's F. October 4, 2014
Finally!! I always dream about these scones, I can't believe there's actually a recipe now!
Pamela T. October 4, 2014
I would be a Sanbakkel because of my mom and grandma and aunts' kitchens at Christmas. Cardamom and butter and fancy tins.