There is nothing better than sleeping over at someone’s house and waking up to them baking something for breakfast.  I know, because I have several friends who are very good at whipping up waffles and muffins and biscuits when I come to visit. So when V’s mother came to stay with us for the weekend, I decided to pass along the fresh baked morning goodness karma, and made some cherry scones.

They are Nigella Lawson’s recipe, with cherries thrown in. Raisins would be good too. Or chocolate chips. Or nuts. Or all of the above!

I love that this recipe doesn’t have a lot of sugar in it, and none sprinkled on top, so you can be more generous with the jam of your liking, without it being overpowering.

Oh, and that’s grandma’s old cake plate right there. She turned 95 yesterday and she’s almost blind, so she doesn’t do a lot of baking anymore (actually, I’m not sure if she ever did). She gave it to me last Christmas and we’ve been using it a lot. Thanks grandma!

Cherry Scones

3 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 tsp. salt

2tsp. baking soda

4 1/2 tsp. cream of tartar

1/4 cup unsalted butter

2 tsp. vegetable shortening

1 1/3 cup milk

1 egg, beaten for egg-wash

1 1/2 cups dried cherries


Bring some water to a boil and soak the dried cherries.

Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees.

In a bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda and cream of tartar. Cut the butter and shortening into pieces and work them into the flour mixture with your fingers. Drain the cherries, and add them. along with the milk. Mix very, very briefly.

Knead on a floured surface until it all holds together well.

Roll the dough into even sized balls (they will expand in the oven). Or you can roll out the dough and use a large, fluted cookie cutter to cut more regular shapes. 

Place on a sheet pan with parchment. Brush the tops with the egg-wash. 

Bake for about 10 minutes, until they are golden.

If possible, eat them right away. They will still be good if toasted the next day though!