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Maple Nut & Pear Scones

February/March 2005, The EatingWell Diabetes Cookbook (2005)

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Delicate pears, pecans and maple flavor make these scones really special. Our makeover of this tender, flaky breakfast pastry uses reduced-fat cream cheese, canola oil and just a touch of butter to replace 1 1/2 sticks of butter. The addition of rolled oats and whole-wheat pastry flour boosts fiber and enhances the nutty flavor. For more fruit intensity, serve with pear butter.



READER'S COMMENT:
"These were good, but I plan to make a couple of minor tweaks when I make these again. (1) Throw the butter and cream cheese in the freezer for a bit before putting in--this should help give the scones a bit more volume when the bake up (...
Maple Nut & Pear Scones

Makes: 1 dozen scones

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar, divided
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons chilled reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchâtel), cut into small pieces (2 ounces)
  • 2 tablespoons chilled butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 cup diced peeled pear, preferably Bartlett (1 large)
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans, or walnuts, divided
  • 3/4 cup low-fat buttermilk, or equivalent buttermilk powder
  • 1 teaspoon maple extract, (see Note) or vanilla extract
  • 1 egg lightly beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for glaze

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or coat with cooking spray.
  2. Combine whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, oats, 1/4 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl; whisk to blend. Using a pastry blender or your fingertips, cut or rub cream cheese and butter into the dry ingredients. Add oil and toss with a fork to coat. Add pear and 1/4 cup nuts; toss to coat. Mix buttermilk and maple (or vanilla) extract in a measuring cup and add just enough to the dry ingredients, stirring with a fork, until the dough clumps together. (It will be sticky.)
  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead several times; do not overwork it. Divide the dough in half and pat each piece into a 7 1/2-inch circle. Cut each circle into 6 wedges and transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Brush the tops with the egg glaze and sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup nuts, pressing lightly. Sprinkle with the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar.
  4. Bake the scones until golden and firm to the touch, 20 to 30 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool slightly before serving.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: The scones are best served the day they are made. Wrap any leftovers individually, place in a plastic bag or container and freeze for up to 1 month. For a quick weekday breakfast, wrap a frozen scone in a paper towel and microwave on Defrost for 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Note: Maple extract, which can be purchased in the spice section of the supermarket, contains the essential flavors of maple syrup, usually diluted with alcohol. Maple syrup cannot be used as a substitute. Products labeled "maple flavoring" usually contain imitation or artificial ingredients.

Nutrition

Per serving: 233 calories; 12 g fat (3 g sat, 5 g mono); 9 mg cholesterol; 29 g carbohydrates; 5 g protein; 3 g fiber; 204 mg sodium; 101 mg potassium.

Carbohydrate Servings: 2

Exchanges: 2 starch, 2 fat


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