A few weeks ago a friend took me to Alice’s Tea Cup for perfectly brewed cups of tea and fabulous pumpkin scones. I can’t wait to go back this summer, but until then I’ll just keep baking from the Alice’s Tea Cup Cookbook. Last night I made the pumpkin scones.
The recipe uses the same basic proportions as the cookbook’s other scone recipes but with the addition of pumpkin. Like another recipe from the book which called for fruit, the pumpkin dough was pretty sticky and seemed much softer than it should be. (Update: Since then I have reduced the milk so dough is not so soft)
Freezing and Thawing
Since there are only 3 of us here, I made a half batch and froze them in a large freezer bag. I tried a couple of different methods of re-heating, but the best was just to use a low setting on the microwave and then heat in the oven to complete the thaw and to warm. If you plan on freezing, do not ice the scones but rather thaw, warm and make the icing fresh. Freezing the shaped scone dough is also an option, though they may not rise as high.
Pumpkin Scones Update
Some time has passed since I first posted this recipe, and based on what I’ve read there is a typo in the book. The actual amount (based on what was used on a TV appearance) is actually 2 tablespoon each of ground ginger and ground cinnamon. Since my version is a half-batch version, I am now using 1 tablespoon each of ground ginger and ground cinnamon. That is still a lot of spice, but the scones are still very good and don’t taste overly spiced. The strange thing is when I first made the scones with the typo amount (1/4 cup of each) they were still great! Also, make sure to add the milk gradually. If you add it all at once the dough will most likely be too soft to knead and you’ll have to drop it.
Alice's Tea Cup Pumpkin Scones
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 210 grams, so heavy cups
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar 36 grams
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/8 teaspoon kosher salt I used Morton
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter cut into 1/2-inch pieces (mine was cold)
- 5 oz buttermilk (divided use) 132 grams
- 1/2 cup canned pumpkin puree all pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling
- 1 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 stick unsalted butter 114 grams
- 1/2 cup firmly packed light or dark brown sugar 100 grams
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- Preheat the oven to 425°F. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, ginger, and cinnamon. With clean hands, work the butter into the dry mixture until it is thoroughly incorporated and has the consistency of fine breadcrumbs.
- Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, and pour HALF the buttermilk, pumpkin, and vanilla extract into the well. Still using your hands (I did this with a spatula scraper), combine the ingredients until all the dry mixture is wet. Gradually add just enough remaining buttermilk until the dough is soft enough to work with.
- Turn the mixture onto a floured surface and gather the dough together. Gently pat the dough to make a disk about 1 1/2 inches thick. Using a 3-or 3 1/2- inch biscuit cutter, cut out as many scones as you can and lay them on a nonstick baking sheet. Gather the remaining dough together lightly to cut out more scones.
- Bake the scones for about 12 minutes, or until lightly browned. Let the scones cool slightly on the baking sheet (about 20 minutes) before glazing them.
- While the scones are cooling, prepare the caramel glaze: Place the butter, brown sugar, lemon juice, and salt in a saucepan over medium heat and whisk gently until the mixture is smooth. Just as the mixture comes to a light boil, add the heavy cream and reduce the heat to low. Whisk well for 2 minutes, or until the glaze is thickened and smooth; then remove the pan from the heat.
- To glaze a scone, hold it by the bottom, dip the top in the warm caramel glaze, and place it back on the baking sheet. Makes 5 o 6
Thanks for the review, Brenda!
I made these scones the other day with some slight variations, I love Alice’s and often frequent there for a cuppa and the pumpkin scones.
Variations – Reduced buttermilk by 1/4 cup and used only 1 tsp of the spices, ginger & cinnamon. They were amazing, I actually thought they were better then Alice’s (especially in light of me saving a trek uptown and the $10 for two!!)
I also didn’t have any cream so I used the milk I had in my fridge, I halved the sauce and still had leftovers after dipping all of the scones.
Thanks for posting!
I can vouch that Alice’s pumpkin scones are very liberally spiced, as of a trip there this summer. Too much so for me, so if I were to make the recipe for my family I would definitely reduce the ginger and cinnamon by at least half. But I do believe 1/4 cup is the amount intended by Alice’s.
Jessica, from what I’ve read the amounts in the book are correct. Plus, I’ve been making the scones with that amount of spices and they’re delicious! Here are a few more reviews from people who’ve made them with the 1/4 cup.
Now I’m only going by what the book says and what I’ve tasted (and shared) and can’t confirm anything other than what’s in the book, but I agree that you should try them as written. Let me know what you think!
the reviews on amazon state that the 1/4 cup of spices written in the recipe is a mistake, and in fact should only be a teaspoon.
are they really good with all those spices? my initial reaction would be to reduce them, but if you say it’s good, maybe i’ll give it a try as written.
Sounds delicious! I’m a sucker for anything pumpkin!
These look great. Will, for sure, make suring holidays.
BTW, I got the best tea I’ve ever tasted from http://www.stashtea.com They have many varities both bags and lose.
These look and sound so good! Last week I made this pumpkin scone recipe http://www.kingarthurflour.com/blog/2010/10/20/pumpkin-is-back-celebrate-with-scones/
They were really good. It would be fun to make these and compare them.
Amy at TheSceneFromMe
Oh how I love scones! Where’s the scratch and sniff screen on my computer when I need it!
Louise, I forgot to mention that I used lemon juice mixed with milk (the old buttermilk sub). It worked fine, but that might have had something to do with why my batter was soft since regular milk is thinner than buttermilk. Or maybe that’s a stretch. Still not sure.
Camille, dipping the tops in the caramel really does make them pretty.
Lora, I’ll watch your blog to see if you try the recipe. BTW, you macarons look delicious.
Katrina, it seems like an insane about of spices, but it works!
Wow, that is a lot of spices. They look great though. And I have an open can of pumpkin, too. The only thing I’m not sure I have enough of is ginger.
Alice’S is so cute. A great place to meet friends for talking and sharing good food and treats. Thanks for the recipe. They look wonderful.
These are gorgeous! They look so fancy 🙂
These look very tasty. I have everything except the buttermilk, including a half can of pumpkin in the frig. I think I’ll need to get some buttermilk and try these.