The lovely rhubarb in the markets these days had got me thinking about rhubarb scones, and Mother's Day seemed like a good occasion to make some. We still have plenty of corn flour from our Lonesome Whistle Farm CSA, so I decided to experiment with a rhubarb cornmeal scone, inspired from here and here.
The rhubarb got a dousing of sugar while I made a buttery dough in the food processor, and then mixed in the fruit at the end.
The dough was soft and a bit sticky on our unusually warm May day, but it didn't need much handling: just a gentle pat into two disks that I sliced into sixths and popped into the oven. The resulting corn-flavored scones, studded with tart rhubarb, were such a hit that I was barely able to save some for Sunday morning.
Rhubarb Cornmeal Scones
makes 124 small rhubarb stalks, trimmed and cut into 1/4 inch slices (1 cup)
1/2 cup sugar (divided)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup corn flour or fine corn meal (I used Lonesome Whistle Farm corn flour)
1 cup whole wheat white flour (I used Lonesome Whistle Farm Stephen's White)
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
8 Tbsp (1 stick) butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 cup buttermilk
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees (unless you plan to freeze the scones and bake later).
2. Rinse, trim, and cut the rhubarb into 1/4 inch slices (yielding 1 cup). Sprinkle over 1/4 cup sugar and the vanilla extract and stir.
3. In a food processor, combine the corn flour, wheat flour, 1/4 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the cubed butter and pulse into pea-sized pieces. Transfer to a mixing bowl (you can also incorporate the butter into the flour by hand or using a pastry knife). Pour in the buttermilk and incorporate it into the dough. Add the sugared rhubarb and stir gently to incorporate.
4. Cover a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper. Transfer the dough onto a floured surface, such as a silicone mat, and divide into two. Gently form into two disks, about 1 1/2 inches tall, dusting with flour as necessary. If the dough seems too sticky to handle, chill it at this point for 15 minutes in the freezer or longer in the refrigerator. Cut each disk into 6 pie slice wedges. Transfer the wedges to the baking sheet.
Note: You can freeze the scone wedges at this point and bake them later (add an extra 5 minutes to the baking time).
5. Bake at 375 degrees for about 25 minutes, rotating the pans 180 degrees half way through the baking. The scones are done when they are a golden all over the top. Cool before eating.