Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Buttermilk Chocolate Chip Scone

My first post of 2008! Happy New Year, everyone.

At our house, we drink a lot of tea. I mean a LOT of tea. Only the good stuff. I even played around with making some blends of my own for my husband for Christmas this year - his favorite was "Larkin in the Morn," a malty rich breakfast tea blend.

With tea simply must come scones. These may look quite a bit like the chocolate chip scones that I have blogged previously, but that recipe is a classic cream, butter, and baking powder scone. I was flipping through Baking with Julia, contemplating making croissants over the holidays (which I wimped out on), and came across the buttermilk scone recipe. I had extra buttermilk in the fridge from the cake I made, so thought I might as well.

Then I got curious about baking with buttermilk. I know that it is always paired with baking soda in recipes, but didn't know WHY. A little internet research explained it to me:

Baking soda, also known as sodium bicarbonate, is a basic salt and reacts with acidic liquid ingredients to create the bubbles of carbon dioxide. (found on It's Chemistry in the Baking)

Easy enough. What I don't really understand is why this reaction is desired more than just using more baking powder, so I'd love to hear an opinion on those of you bakers who are more scientifically trained than I am.

The texture of these was good, considering that they have far less fat than the scones with butter and cream, but I think I still prefer my traditional recipe.

Baking with Julia is actually written by Dorie Greenspan, and I have grown to really love her cookbooks. I won't copy the recipe here, but this book is a baking essential. It has a nice combination of complicated recipes (like croissants, which I hope to eventually try) and good standards like this scone recipe.

Categories: Chocolate, Scones


Peabody said...

Good looking scone. I find the best ones are made with buttermilk.
Here's to a happy and stress free 2008!

Deborah said...

Yum - these look delicious!

Cheryl said...

Love, love, love scones. And with chocolate chips, even better.

breadchick said...

Yup, this is a great scone recipe! Baking with Julia is a must, I agree.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jenny, I just found your link. I wanted to let you know there are several reasons: baking soda is more shelf stable, simple humidity can't make it react, also it is about four times as powerful tsp for tsp.
I hope that helps. Would you mind if I used your question for another post?

Unknown said...

Heather - I don't mind at all. Sorry it took me so long to respond!

Anonymous said...

A really good scone is hard to find. This recipe sounds delicious!