Irish Cheddar Leek Scones

March 23, 2022
Created by Chef Callyn Graf
40 minutes
Serves 8 scones
  • 1 cup heavy cream, plus 1/4 cup for brushing (divided)
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder, plus 2 teaspoons
  • 2 tsp granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold
  • 1 cup chopped leeks
  • Flaky sea salt, such as Maldon
  1. In a small bowl, gently whisk cream and the egg.
  2. In a large stainless steel bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt. Place the butter in the bowl and coat all sides with flour. Using a bench scraper, cut the butter into ½-inch cubes. Continue to use the bench scraper to cut the cubes into smaller pieces. Switch to a pastry blender or two butter knives and begin to cut in the butter with one hand while turning the bowl with the other. It’s important not to use your hands, as the temperature of them will soften the butter too much. Continue to blend and turn until most of the butter is incorporated but you still have quite a few larger chunks.
  3. Add the cheddar and leeks and use your hands or the bench scraper to evenly toss them throughout the butter-flour mixture. Pour the cream mixture into the dry ingredients. Use a silicone spatula to incorporate it into the flour mixture and mix until you no longer see pools of liquid. Turn the dough over and press it back into itself a few times, in a kneading motion. With each effort, rotate the bowl and try to scoop up as much of the dough as possible, with the intention of quickly forming it into one cohesive mass. Stop once the dough is fully formed.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Pat the dough into an 8-inch circle, and use a bench scraper to cut the dough into 8 equal wedges.
  5. From here, the scones can be frozen for later use (up to 3 months).  Place the unbaked scones on the parchment-lined baking sheet and freeze for at least 1 hour. Once the scones are frozen solid, wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and return to the freezer, where they can be stored.
  6. If baking right away, preheat your oven to 400°. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Transfer the formed scones to the baking sheet, leaving at least 2 inches between them. Brush the tops with heavy cream and sprinkle a few flakes of sea salt on each.
  7. Place the baking sheet in the oven and bake for 18 to 25 minutes, until the scones are evenly golden brown and nearly doubled in size. If baking from frozen, decrease the oven temperature to 375° and bake for 25 to 35 minutes. You can test for doneness by gently pressing the top of the scone – it should spring back when done. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and transfer the scones to a wire rack to cool. Consuming the day you bake is recommended.