A good scone should be tender and buttery, and while it may not need accompaniments like butter, cream or jam to improve the overall flavor, it never hurts to have some at hand to finish the scone off as you eat it. These scones are a bit of an exception, because they really need no accompaniment – no matter how much you like spreading a bit of jam on your scones.
These Butterscotch Pecan Scones start out with a buttery, light scone dough and are studded with butterscotch chips and toasted pecans. Butterscotch chips are quite sweet on their own, but work very well against the buttery but not sweet background of the scone. I used lightly salted, toasted pecans in these to make sure that they would contrast well with the butterscotch chips and the butterscotch drizzle that I added. Feel free to use unsalted nuts, if you prefer, but do take the time to lightly toast them in a skillet to bring out their flavor and make them just a bit more crisp before adding them into the scone dough.
These scones are great when they are fresh, because the scone itself is crisp on the outside and very moist inside, with a great combination of flavors in each bite. I’d make them shortly before serving, if possible. That said, they do keep well when stored in an airtight container, loosing only a little crispness but none of the flavor. If you must make them in advance, don’t glaze them and pop them back into a 350F oven for a couple of minutes to freshen them up before serving!
Butterscotch Pecan Scones
2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
6 tbsp butter, chilled
1 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup butterscotch chips
1/2 cup chopped, toasted pecans
1/4 cup butterscotch chips, for topping
1 tbsp milk , for topping
Preheat oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Cut butter into 6-8 chunks and add to flour mixture, tossing to coat. Using your fingertips, rub the butter into the flour until mixture is sandy and butter is well distributed, with no pieces larger than a big pea.
Add in milk and vanilla and stir until dough comes together. Add in butterscotch chips and pecans.
Either keeping the dough in your mixing bowl, or turning it out onto a lightly floured surface, knead dough for 1 – 2 minutes. Divide dough into two balls and press each into a disc about 3/4-inch thick. Use a knife to divide each disc into quarters and place scones on prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 17-22 minutes, until scones are golden brown.
Cool on a wire rack until room temperature.
When scones are cooled, combine the remaining 1/4 cup butterscotch chips and milk in a small, microwave-safe bowl and melt together (check at short intervals in the microwave and stir frequently). When smooth, drizzle over scones.