IT'S THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR!
I know it's only early September but in my house I let Fall reign as long as I possibly can. Growing up in New England I couldn't get enough of the slightly cooler season - I was one of the weird kids who was happy to cover my books in brown paper bags, organize my school supplies, get out of the sun and get into a pile of crisp orange leaves. As I grew older my fondness for fall only became stronger and as 'pumpkin everything' became the norm - but I believe pumpkin is only a prince in the realm of fall foods because in my book sweet potato is king. It's sweeter, slightly more dense and has a better all around flavor.
And if we are on the subject of royalty - another majesty in my kitchen kingdom is the scone. Light, flaky, tender yet crisp. I promise you, this vegan scone recipe is better than any butter-laden batch. The method is pretty fast and fool proof, too. The simple ingredient list is loaded with healthier choices like coconut sugar in leu of white sugar, spelt flour instead of white flour and coconut oil over vegan butter. I love how the pecans add an interesting crunch and an extra pop of flavor. But of course the thing that makes this recipe a star is the glaze - a shockingly simple blend of equal parts high quality tahini and maple syrup. The way it pairs with the just-slightly-sweet but well spiced pastry is uniquely addictive.
A few things to note: It's pretty easy to find canned sweet potato these days if you can't be bothered to first bake one as that can take a pret-ty long time when you just want to get on with your scones. Subbing canned pumpkin should also work fine - I just might up the sweetness a bit by adding a full cup of coconut sugar instead of 3/4 cup.
I based this scone recipe off one that I developed earlier this year using a Minimalist Baker recipe as my initial jumping off point. I have made many variations of these scones over the past few months - mixing in whatever fruit is fresh and in season - to almost all positive results. I do believe some of Minimalist Baker's readers found scone-success subbing vegan butter in leu of coconut oil but I personally think coconut oil makes for a more tender final product - not to mention, it's one ingredient vs. the many unpronounceable additives in vegan butter.
Make this recipe - it's still a treat but a healthier one and it will convert even the most summer loving, non-scone-eater you know. Enjoy Fall Lovers! <3
Serves: 8 • Prep Time: 10 min • Bake Time: 15-17 min
For the scones
- 2 cups spelt flour (sub wheat flour or gluten free alternative with varied results)
- 3/4 cup coconut sugar (sub 1/2 cup white sugar)
- 2 tbsp. baking powder
- 1 tbsp. pumpkin spice (or combine a mixture of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cardamom to make your own)
- 1/2 tsp. pink salt
- 6 tbsp. solid, room temperature coconut oil
- 1 cup mashed or canned sweet potato (sub pumpkin puree)
- 1/4 cup unsweetned almond milk + 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
- 3/4 cup chopped pecans (plus some left whole for garnish)
For the glaze
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup high quality tahini
- 1/2 tsp. pink salt
1. Preheat your oven to 425*F (yes, its a high temp. for baked goods). Measure out your almond milk and stir in the apple cider vinegar, let the mixture curdle while you prepare the rest of the scone batter.
2. In a large mixing bowl combine your dry ingredients - flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and spices and stir to combine.
3. Scoop the room temperature coconut oil into the bowl and incorporate into the dry ingredients with a fork or pastry cutter. Keep going until the entire mixture resembles dry sand and there are no large pieces of coconut oil left.
4. Using a spatula, gently mix in the sweet potato puree, almond milk and pecans just until everything starts to come together to form a loose dough. Do NOT over mix!
5. Once the dough begins to come together, transfer the mixture onto a floured surface and use your hands to form it into an even, round disk that is about 1.5" thick. Ideally at this stage you still want to be able to see little pieces of unmelted coconut oil as this is what will help the pastry to get nice and light and flaky.
6. Use a sharp knife to slice the disk into 8 equal triangles - as you would a pie. Carefully transfer each piece to a parchment lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with a little more coconut sugar or top with more pecan pieces for garnish.
7. Bake for 15-17 minutes - once a toothpick comes out clean, they're done!
8. While baking mix together the glaze ingredients with a fork.
9. Allow the scones to come to room temperature before applying the glaze - which can be drizzled or "painted" on - your preference. Top with a few more pecan pieces if desired.
10. These do well at room temperature and store great in the fridge for a few days! If you do plan on heating them back up, apply the glaze at the time you plan on consuming them or else you'll end up with a sticky mess.
LIGHT & LOVE, LIVECLEAN KITCHEN