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JOY OF BAKING

Oat scones

(food styling/lisa falso; wendy maeda/globe staff)
By Allison Boomer
Globe Correspondent / March 25, 2009

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Makes 6 large scones

A nutritious breakfast of oatmeal is always a good idea, but not everyone likes the consistency of cereal grains simmered on the stovetop. Baking offers another way to reap the benefits of oats' whole-grain goodness. In this mixture, old-fashioned oatmeal (not the powdery quick-cooking grain) is mixed with whole-wheat flour and all-purpose flour, along with butter and buttermilk. Preparing scones requires gentle handling. Incorporate wet and dry ingredients quickly; overmixing will yield tough scones. Add 1 cup light or dark raisins with the buttermilk, if you like. Serve the triangles fresh from the oven, split in half with a spoonful of preserves. Leftovers are best double-wrapped the day they're baked and stored in the freezer. Slice day-old or thawed scones and pop into a toaster for a quick, hearty morning treat.

1cup old-fashioned oatmeal (not quick-cooking)
1cup whole-wheat flour
1/2cup unbleached all-purpose flour
2teaspoons baking powder
1/2teaspoon baking soda
1/2teaspoon salt
2tablespoons sugar
6tablespoons butter, cut up
2eggs
1/2cup buttermilk
Extra unbleached all-purpose flour (for shaping)

1. Set the oven at 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. In large bowl, stir together the oatmeal, whole-wheat and all-purpose flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar.

3. Using a pastry blender or two blunt knives, cut butter into the flour mixture until the texture is crumbly.

4. In a bowl, beat the eggs and buttermilk. With a rubber spatula, stir the egg mixture into the flour mixture with a few quick strokes.

5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Shape it into a flat cake. With your hands, press the cake into a 6-inch round that is about 1-inch thick. With a long chef's knife, cut the round in half, then cut each half into 3 triangles. Transfer the triangles to the baking sheet.

6. Bake the scones for 20 minutes or until they are lightly browned.