Spice Rack Challenge: Dill

April’s Spice Rack challenge was pretty perfect: Dill. I use dill quite a bit already – but only in a few standard recipes. I love Dill Pickles. So much that I put Dill Weed AND Dill Seed in them for an extra kick. My favorite way to grill salmon is with lemon and dill. [Cue shameless plug, don’t forget to enter SK’s Lemon Ladies Meyer Lemon Giveaway – ends tonight!] But despite all of that, I really am a scone addict. Sweet scones are great – I’ve been hooked on a proper cream tea since I visited the UK as a teenager. But there’s really something to be said about savory scones. Its a little unexpected – great with soup or as a stand in for dinner rolls.

There’s only one problem. Have I mentioned I am not a baker? I am the girl who seems to make great tasting chocolate chip cookies but their texture is all off. Consistency is not my strong suit – and you really need consistency for baking. But isn’t the Spice Rack Challenge all about going outside of your comfort zone? So scones it was.

White Cheddar and Dill Milk Scones
Adapted from Cheddar-Chive Scones on Epicurious and Local Kitchen’s Cheddar Parsley Scones
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup dried dill or 1/2 cup chopped fresh dill
5 oz extra-sharp cheddar, coarsely grated (1 1/2 cups)
2 cups milk (1%)
4 tablespoons butter, melted

Mix all of the dry ingredients together. Add the dill and cheddar, and incorporate thoroughly. I used a stand mixer, but I’m sure that you could easily do this recipe by hand. Keep the mixer on low (or grab another pair of hands and have them mix) while you slowly pour in the two cups of milk and two of the tablespoons of butter to make a very wet dough. I bet if you used the cream called for in this recipe, you wouldn’t have to add butter, but I thought it might benefit from some additional fat as I was using 1% milk.

Roll out the dough onto a well floured surface – it will be very sticky. I had to dust the counter and the dough multiple times. Knead a bit and divide in half. Roll into two 7″ rounds. Cut into six slices and lay out on a baking sheet. Use a silpat or parchment paper to keep the dough from sticking. Brush once with melted butter (you will have some leftover.) Bake at 400° for anywhere from 15-25 minutes – watch until they turn golden brown. I also brushed the scones with the last bit of butter in the middle of baking.

I am really pleasantly surprised with how they came out. Some of the cheese came to the surface and crisped up. The dill came through but wasn’t terribly overpowering, either. I foresee lots more scones in my future.

1. Serve with a hot bowl of soup on a rainy day. We’ve certainly had our share of those here – “April showers…” and all that.
2. Stuff them. As soon as the first scone was cool enough to eat I sandwiched some ham and homemade mustard inside and it became lunch. Fantastic.
3. Cut them into smaller pieces to make mini scones for a potluck party.

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