Dark Chocolate Hazelnut Espresso Scones

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Good morning fellow early birds & scone lovers!

It is an absolutely stunning Monday morning here in Vancouver, so even though it is a Monday morning and thus a little bit depressing that I have to go into work today, I can’t help but be more chipper than my usual Monday morning self all thanks to this gorgeous sunshine!  Now I don’t know what it is about these sunny Vancouver mornings, but they always put me in a scone baking mood! Well if I’m being honest, I am pretty much always in a scone baking mood – because if there is one thing I know for sure about myself, it is that I am an absolute scone-aholic.

Not only do I love to bake cornucopias amounts of scones to test out new flavour combinations, but once a batch of fresh scones comes out of my oven… stopping at just one scone is literally impossible for me. Seriously – how do you eat just one scone? As far as I’m concerned, if you can stop after eating just one delicious, flaky, buttery homemade scone… you have super-human powers and deserve to be awarded a medal of honour for the person with the most self control when it comes to scone consumption. This would be a very prestigious award would you agree?

Alright, I am getting off-topic, but basically what I am trying to say is that although I like to believe myself to be somebody who is pretty disciplined when it comes to portion control, I have to admit that scones are my weakness. Yup – if you present me with a good old fashioned, homemade scone I lose absolutely all of my self control – in short… you have found my kryptonite. But I mean come on… these are fresh, flaky, buttery, fluffy, warm scones we are taking about here – So I ask you… who needs self control when you have scones that are as delicious as these Dark Chocolate & Hazelnut Mocha Scones? I know I sure don’t!

As far as I’m concerned, scones deserve the respect  that having no self control brings. Let me elaborate on this comment – the fact of the matter is that scones really are best eaten on the same day they are baked; therefor, it is for this reason that I would consider it an absolute injustice – a crime really – to not consume an entire batch of freshly baked scone goodness. Wouldn’t you agree??? Now, whether you think these are just the insane ramblings of a scone-crazed woman… I will leave that for you to decide – but as far as I’m concerned… that’s my logic and I am sticking to it 😀

So this morning when I woke up to a scone craving like no other, I figured it would only make sense to skip my morning workout for a little early morning baking session and whip up a batch of these Scones. I feel like baking fresh scones on a Monday morning was a completely justifiable – (albeit totally counter productive) – excuse to not work out 😀  Now, because I am currently in the process of testing out recipes for my upcoming Farmers Market debut in May, I decided to try change up my usual scone recipe with the addition of some dark chocolate chunks, chopped hazelnuts and fresh espresso – (I thought the espresso was an essential addition because let’s face it, it’s still a Monday morning.)

That’s right – dark chocolate, hazelnuts and espresso all baked into a fluffy scone… I went there, and might I just say that these scones were absolutely to die for! The flavours of the dark chocolate and the hazelnuts together was phenomenal and in combination with the fresh espresso… heaven. Seriously, if any of you have ever tried, and subsequently fallen in love with a hazelnut mocha… let me tell you, you will positively fall in love with these scones.

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Dark Chocolate & Hazelnut Espresso Scones
Makes: 6 medium scones

Things you need… 
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tbsp espresso powder
pinch of salt
1/3 cup cold butter, cubed
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts
1/4 cup dark chocolate chunks

How to make… 
Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, espresso powder, sugar, and cinnamon. Using a pastry cutter, cut in the cubed butter until pea sized chunks remain. Toss in the dark chocolate and hazelnut chunks to evenly distribute.

In a small bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, egg and vanilla. Drizzle over the dry ingredients and gently stir the wet ingredients into the dry with a fork until ragged dough forms. It is okay if there is still some dry ingredients collecting at the bottom of your bowl – this will be worked in during the folding process.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and fold over 3-4 times to incorporate any leftover dry ingredients. Dough should be easy to work with. Shape the dough into a 1 inch thick disk and cut into 6 equal scones.

Place the scones onto the prepared baking sheet and brush the tops with melted butter. Sprinkle with sugar and bake for 20-25 minutes or until tops are golden brown and spring back to the touch.
Allow to cool for five minutes before serving.

Enjoy!

KP xoxo

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