Savory Kale and Two-Cheese Scones | Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street

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A Tuscan pasta inspired this dinner-for-breakfast baked treat
Milk Street Bowtie Savory Kale and Two-Cheese Scones

Savory Kale and Two-Cheese Scones

Appears in May-June 2020

1¼ hours 40 minutes active, plus cooling

Savory Kale and Two-Cheese Scones

Free

When standard breakfast pastries are too sugary, bake a batch of these flavorful savory scones. This recipe is our adaptation of the hearty kale and cheese scones created by Briana Holt, of Tandem Coffee + Bakery in Portland, Maine. Dried currants and a small amount of the sugar in the dough complement the minerally, vegetal notes of the kale and counterbalance the saltiness of the cheddar and pecorino, while a good dose of black pepper adds an undercurrent of spiciness. Either lacinato kale (also called dinosaur or Tuscan kale) or curly kale will work; you will need an average-sized bunch to obtain the amount of chopped stemmed leaves for the recipe.

12

Large scones

Tip

Don’t allow the buttermilk and butter to lose their chill before use. Keeping them cold helps ensure that the dough will remain workable and won’t become unmanageably soft during shaping. When rotating the baking sheets halfway through the baking time, work quickly so the oven doesn’t lose too much heat.

1¼ hours

40 minutes active, plus cooling

80 grams (½ cup) dried currants
87 grams (4 cups) stemmed and finely chopped lacinato or curly kale (see note)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
455 grams (3½ cups) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
50 grams (¼ cup) white sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 1/4 teaspoons table salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
115 grams (4 ounces) sharp or extra-sharp cheddar cheese, cut into ¼-inch cubes (1 cup)
15 grams (½ ounce) finely grated pecorino Romano cheese (¼ cup)
1½ cups cold buttermilk
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) salted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces and chilled
1 large egg, beaten
36 grams (¼ cup) raw shelled sunflower seeds
Ingredients
  • 80

    grams (½ cup) dried currants

  • 87

    grams (4 cups) stemmed and finely chopped lacinato or curly kale (see note)

  • 1

    tablespoon lemon juice

  • 455

    grams (3½ cups) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting

  • 50

    grams (¼ cup) white sugar

  • 4

    teaspoons baking powder

  • ½

    teaspoon baking soda

  • teaspoons table salt

  • 2

    teaspoons ground black pepper

  • 115

    grams (4 ounces) sharp or extra-sharp cheddar cheese, cut into ¼-inch cubes (1 cup)

  • 15

    grams (½ ounce) finely grated pecorino Romano cheese (¼ cup)

  • cups cold buttermilk

  • 16

    tablespoons (2 sticks) salted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces and chilled

  • 1

    large egg, beaten

  • 36

    grams (¼ cup) raw shelled sunflower seeds

Directions
  1. 01
    Heat the oven to 375°F with racks in the upper- and lower-middle positions. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with kitchen parchment. In a small microwave-safe bowl, stir together the currants and 2 tablespoons water. Microwave uncovered on high until warm and plump, about 30 seconds; set aside. In a medium bowl, toss the kale and lemon juice; set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and pepper.
  2. 02
    To a food processor, add about half of the flour mixture and scatter all of the butter over the top. Pulse until the butter is in pieces slightly larger than peas, 10 to 12 pulses. Transfer to the bowl with the remaining flour mixture. Add the currants and any remaining liquid, the cheddar, pecorino and kale. Toss with your hands until well combined. Add about ⅓ of the buttermilk and toss just a few times with your hands, making sure to scrape along the bottom of the bowl, until the liquid is absorbed. Add the remaining buttermilk in 2 more additions, tossing after each. After the final addition of buttermilk, toss until no dry, floury bits remain. The mixture will be quite crumbly and will not form a cohesive dough.
  3. 03
    Lightly dust the counter with flour, turn the mixture out onto it, then give it a final toss. Divide it into 2 even piles, gathering each into a mound, then briefly knead each mound; it's fine if the mixture is still somewhat crumbly. Gather each mound into a ball, then press firmly into a cohesive 5-inch disk about 1½ inches thick. Using a chef's knife, cut each disk into 6 wedges. Place 6 wedges on each prepared baking sheet, spaced evenly apart. Brush the tops with the beaten egg, then sprinkle with the sunflower seeds, pressing lightly to adhere.
  4. 04
    Bake until the scones are deep golden brown, 30 to 35 minutes, switching and rotating the baking sheets halfway through. Cool on the baking sheets on wire racks for 5 minutes, then transfer directly to a rack and cool for at least another 5 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.
    See Demo
    savory-kale-two-cheese-scones-step-3
Tip: Don’t allow the buttermilk and butter to lose their chill before use. Keeping them cold helps ensure that the dough will remain workable and won’t become unmanageably soft during shaping. When rotating the baking sheets halfway through the baking time, work quickly so the oven doesn’t lose too much heat.
.
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Savory Kale and Two-Cheese Scones

Get Ready to Cook

12

Large scones

1¼ hours

40 minutes active, plus cooling

Tip

Don’t allow the buttermilk and butter to lose their chill before use. Keeping them cold helps ensure that the dough will remain workable and won’t become unmanageably soft during shaping. When rotating the baking sheets halfway through the baking time, work quickly so the oven doesn’t lose too much heat.

Ingredients
  • 80

    grams (½ cup) dried currants

  • 87

    grams (4 cups) stemmed and finely chopped lacinato or curly kale (see note)

  • 1

    tablespoon lemon juice

  • 455

    grams (3½ cups) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting

  • 50

    grams (¼ cup) white sugar

  • 4

    teaspoons baking powder

  • ½

    teaspoon baking soda

  • teaspoons table salt

  • 2

    teaspoons ground black pepper

  • 115

    grams (4 ounces) sharp or extra-sharp cheddar cheese, cut into ¼-inch cubes (1 cup)

  • 15

    grams (½ ounce) finely grated pecorino Romano cheese (¼ cup)

  • cups cold buttermilk

  • 16

    tablespoons (2 sticks) salted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces and chilled

  • 1

    large egg, beaten

  • 36

    grams (¼ cup) raw shelled sunflower seeds

Step 1 of 4

Combine Dry Ingredients

80
grams (½ cup) dried currants
87
grams (4 cups) stemmed and finely chopped lacinato or curly kale (see note)
455
grams (3½ cups) all-purpose flour
50
grams (¼ cup) white sugar
4
teaspoons baking powder
½
teaspoon baking soda
teaspoons table salt
2
teaspoons ground black pepper

Heat the oven to 375°F with racks in the upper- and lower-middle positions. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with kitchen parchment. In a small microwave-safe bowl, stir together the currants and 2 tablespoons water.


Microwave uncovered on high until warm and plump, about 30 seconds; set aside. In a medium bowl, toss the kale and lemon juice; set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and pepper.

Step 2 of 4

Create Dough Mixture

115
grams (4 ounces) sharp or extra-sharp cheddar cheese, cut into ¼-inch cubes (1 cup)
15
grams (½ ounce) finely grated pecorino Romano cheese (¼ cup)
cups cold buttermilk
16
tablespoons (2 sticks) salted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces and chilled

To a food processor, add about half of the flour mixture and scatter all of the butter over the top. Pulse until the butter is in pieces slightly larger than peas, 10 to 12 pulses. Transfer to the bowl with the remaining flour mixture.


Add the currants and any remaining liquid, the cheddar, pecorino and kale. Toss with your hands until well combined. Add about ⅓ of the buttermilk and toss just a few times with your hands, making sure to scrape along the bottom of the bowl, until the liquid is absorbed.


Add the remaining buttermilk in 2 more additions, tossing after each. After the final addition of buttermilk, toss until no dry, floury bits remain. The mixture will be quite crumbly and will not form a cohesive dough.

Step 3 of 4

Separate Dough

Al-purpose flour, for dusting
1
large egg, beaten
36
grams (¼ cup) raw shelled sunflower seeds

Lightly dust the counter with flour, turn the mixture out onto it, then give it a final toss. Divide it into 2 even piles, gathering each into a mound, then briefly knead each mound; it's fine if the mixture is still somewhat crumbly.


Gather each mound into a ball, then press firmly into a cohesive 5-inch disk about 1½ inches thick. Using a chef's knife, cut each disk into 6 wedges.


Place 6 wedges on each prepared baking sheet, spaced evenly apart. Brush the tops with the beaten egg, then sprinkle with the sunflower seeds, pressing lightly to adhere.

Step 4 of 4

Bake, Cool and Serve

Bake until the scones are deep golden brown, 30 to 35 minutes, switching and rotating the baking sheets halfway through. Cool on the baking sheets on wire racks for 5 minutes, then transfer directly to a rack and cool for at least another 5 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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