Tuesday 12 August 2014

Chocolate and cranberry scones - for International Scone Week

Last night I made my second batch of scones in three days.  If I had the energy I would be happy to eat freshly baked scones every day.  I grew up eating scones regularly and now, like my mother and grandmothers, it is one of my easiest things to bake.  So for a trivia night when energy was limited, I baked cheese scones.  They even inspired our team name: The Scones.  An auspicious start to International Scone Week.

International Scone Week was the brain child of Celia, Heidi, and Joanna in 2010.  This year they are celebrating again.  Unlike my mother and grandmothers, I love baking scones with different flavour combinations.  Plain is just not enough for me.  (Having said that, my mum did some yummy cinnamon pinwheel scones on the weekend!)

I had a bag of chocolate melts, some dried cranberries and a round of brie in the kitchen.  Here started my brainstorming of ideas.  Finally I settled on these chocolate and pecan scone pinwheels.  I had just enough walnuts to use instead of pecans.  Sylvia preferred cranberries.  Before I knew it the recipe looked a totally different creature to the pinwheels and was my own recipe.

The scones are not bitter but not particularly sweet.  Sylvia didn't taste them at all.  She was home sick with an ear ache that bothered her in the morning, disappeared (and embarrassed  me) when we saw the doctor, and came back again in the evening.  She went to bed early without a fuss - not even her usual request for something sweet.  I tried the scones with honey, apricot jam and butter but I preferred them plain.  They reminded me a little of my pumpernickel rolls.  Which may explain why E had one or two with a bowl of split pea soup for dinner.  He then said he liked them best with apricot jam. 

As an aside, E is Scottish and says 'app'-ricot whereas I say 'ape'-ricot.  I always attribute so many differences between us to him being Scottish and me being Australian.  Then at the trivia night I was surprised that other Australians used the term Chopper for the bikes I only ever knew as Dragsters.  I assumed when E talked about Choppers that it was was British but not Australian! What do you call them?

Back to the scones, I know that they aren't everyone's cuppa tea.  I love them.  They were fluffy and dark and just sweet enough for me.  I really enjoyed the sweet bursts of the cranberries.  Now I am hoping that I can find time for more scones as I still have brie and walnuts to use up.

Update: these scones were best fresh as is always the case with scones, however we enjoyed them the next day too.  E had one for lunch, as did Sylvia in her lunchbox and I shared some with my mum who enjoyed them.  If they last any longer, they are probably best kept in the freezer.

Previously on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
One year ago: Beetroot, apple and walnut scones for International Scone Week
Two years ago: Wholemeal pretzels and Pea soup
Three years ago: Melbourne to Orange Roadtrip - a long long way
Four years ago: Honey, Yoghurt and Chocolate Cake
Five years ago: Surprising Sprouts in Risotto
Six years ago: My Vegetarian Lasagne
Seven years ago: Favourite food books

Chocolate and cranberry scones
An original Green Gourmet Giraffe recipe
Makes 24 small scones

2 1/2 cups self-raising flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1/4 tsp mixed spice
80g butter or margarine
1 cup vanilla yoghurt*
2 tbsp treacle
2 tbsp golden syrup
6 tbsp water, or as required
1/2 cup dried cranberries
milk, to glaze scones

Grease a round oven tray and preheat oven to 200 C.

Mix flour, cocoa and mixed spice into a large mixing bowl. Rub in butter or margarine (I used margarine). Stir in cranberries. Gently mix through yoghurt, treacle, golden syrup and enough water to make a soft dough. It will be slightly sticky but turn it out onto a well floured surface and knead just a few times until the dough is smooth.

Pat out to about 2 cm high on a well floured surface. Cut into small round scones with a cutter or the edge of a glass dipped in flour.

Place side by side on greased tray, brush with milk and bake for 20 to 30 minutes until scones are golden brown. (Check those in the middle are not undercooked on their underneath - they can go back in the oven for 5 minutes if you find this is the case.)

Note: I use five:am vanilla yoghurt which is thick and not overly sweet. If you don't have a good vanilla yoghurt, you could use some additional sweetener and regular yoghurt, buttermilk or even make them vegan by using vegan milk that has been curdled by sitting for 5 minutes with a good splash of cider vinegar.

On the Stereo:
The Captain: Kasey Chambers


  1. Hehe I call them ape-ricots. How good do these scones look? :D

  2. Chocolate scones! And, an International Scone Week? That sounds like a match made in heaven. Now, if only I could magic up one of those scones while at my desk...

  3. They are gorgeous, so cute and mini. Love the flavour combo. I'd eat scones everyday too if I could. Nothing beats a still warm freshly baked scone :)

  4. Adore your choc mini scones, ps like you I say ape ricot

  5. Hi Johanna, Everyone's scones are so different this year. Yours look amazing.

  6. International Scone Week...brilliant idea! Thanks so much for sharing the recipe...I think I might try it with dried blueberries or dried cherries too. Cheers! :)

  7. These scones look lovely. Like you, I'm not a fan of plain scones but interesting varieties I do love (although sadly most commercial ones aren't vegan, even though they easily could be). As for choppers, no idea! And as for ear aches, you and Sylvia both have my sympathy...Mr B and I still get blocked ears at least yearly so I understand the frustration.

    1. Thanks Kari - maybe you will come across choppers in the UK - I think we watched quite a bit of nostalgia tv (such as I love the 1970s) when we lived in Scotland when they all talked about Choppers. It is more frustrating trying to work out what is going on with sylvia's ear when she had ear ache at home and then it disappeared at the doctors and returned when she went to school. Went to the dr again and he now says there is probably an infection which is being treated. Fortunately (touchwood) we don't have ear aches too much here - though E gets blocked ears.

  8. Ahhh love freshly baked scones - I like not particularly sweet scones but mostly savory scones, interesting that they taste almost like pumpernickel rolls, I think I would like that one especially with a bowl of yummy soup! Is Sylvia feeling better from her earache? Hope she’s ok. I sometimes say app-ricot, lol.

    Happy International Scone Week to you and your family! :)

    1. Thanks Rika - sylvia is now on antibiotics so hopefully will improve soon. These scones are probably not as savoury as pumpernickel but my pumpernickel rolls have chocolate and currants in them.

  9. These look really good. I have never had a chocolate scone and I don't like overly sweet things anymore.

  10. My mother and grandmother were always baking scones as well. We always had them with whipped cream and homemade jam - either apricot or raspberry. I love your take on traditional scones with the spices and cocoa; these must have sent a wonderful aroma through your kitchen as they baked xx

    1. Thanks Charlie - that is just how our scones were served. I rarely have cream in the kitchen so it is more likely to be butter and jam in our kitchen and sylvia doesn't like butter! I quite enjoyed that these scones tasted really good plain (and even quite good with peanut butter)

  11. I hope I haven't missed Scone week - please tell me it is still on, as I love a scone and make them regularly! These scones of yours look STUNNING and I would love to have one with some home-made plum of cherry jam! Karen

  12. Fresh-baked scones always sound good to me! Love that these are so chocolatey...a perfect way to start the day!

  13. I have to make scones tomorrow then as I have a new old scone holder :P

  14. I have never heard of National Scone Week - but what a great idea. I love your flavour combination of chocolate and cranberry. Thank you for sharing your recipe.

  15. Ooh they're so dark and gorgeous, Johanna! I've never made a cocoa scone before, but what a great idea, especially with the cranberries!

  16. Ooo, chocolate scones - what a fabulous idea.
    Have a super day.
    :-) Mandy xo

  17. Thanks everyone for your comments - they really were lovely scones - there is still time to make a scone for International scone week before the round up on Sunday.

  18. Oh your scones look super yummy Johanna. I tend to like my scones fairly plain and unsweetened as I like to put something sweet on top, but yours sound so good, they would be delicious just as they are. I think I'd like them warm with just a smidgen of butter.

  19. Oh and snap - we both went for chocolate scones for ISW. Perhaps no real surprise!

  20. G'day! I sooooooooooo want to try one right now! YUM!
    Thanks for sharing as part of Celia's International Scone Week too!
    Cheers! Joanne

  21. These sound delicious - I'll have to veganise them!
    I also love making variations of scone flavours :D


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