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Butter & Flower: Lemon Lavender Scones

October 12, 2010

I’ve been challenging myself to try some new spices. You know when you come across an intriguing recipe, then see it calls for something like fenugreek seeds and give up on it completely? Well, no more! Ever since I discovered the joy of bulk spices, the thought of trying some new flavor has become much less daunting. I can buy just the amount I need for the recipe, usually for mere pennies, rather than investing in a $6 jar of something you may never use again.

There was a fantastic spice store we came across in Napa’s Oxbow Public Market. There were rows and rows of jars filled with spices, some I’d never even heard of! Man, I wanted some of everything, but I kept it under control, coming away with chipotle chili powder, ground cloves, and dried lavender buds. Now I needed to find a way to use them! The wheels started turning….

Pairing the sweet, floral lavender with bright, zesty lemon seemed natural to me. Baking these flavors into scones also gave me a reason to try out the spelt flour I bought at the farmers market a few weeks ago. I am so happy with how these turned out. Flaky, buttery, not too sweet, with the spelt flour adding a glorious nutty flavor. I’m in love with this ingredient now. I mean, look at the golden color of that flour!

Lemon Lavender Scones

© Copyright 2010 Carly Sullivan, Tart to Heart


  • 2 cups (7 oz) whole spelt flour (you can substitute with whole wheat or emmer flour)
  • 1 cup (4 1/2 oz) all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp dried lavender buds
  • 1 Tbsp lemon zest (or the zest of one lemon)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • Raw sugar, for sprinkling


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  2. Cut the butter into small cubes and scatter over the dry ingredients, along with the lavender (be sure to pick through your lavender first, as mine had several bits of grass, etc). Rub the butter into the dry ingredients with your fingers until they form pea-sized pieces. Add the lemon zest and toss to combine.
  3. In a small bowl, lightly beat the egg and vanilla. Add to the bowl, along with about 2/3 of the buttermilk and stir to combine (your hands are often best for this!). If the mixture is still dry, add more buttermilk. As I’ve said before, never dump in all your liquid at once when making scones because you may end up with a wet mess depending on how you measured your flour (if you measured by weight the amount should be just right).
  4. Liberally flour a clean surface and turn out the dough. With floured hands, pat the dough into a circle about 3/4-inch thick. Use a floured knife to cut wedges. I made 8 large scones, but you could make two smaller circles and cut about 12 smaller scones from them instead.
  5. Place the scones on a baking sheet. Brush with milk and sprinkle with raw sugar. Bake for 20 minutes, rotating the pan 180 degrees after 10 minutes.
  6. Serve warm with a generous drizzle of honey and a cup of Earl Grey tea! (The cute little honey pot in the photo was a gift my friend Ali brought me from England, full of thick, creamy honey!)


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