On one of our hiking ventures last year, Joe and I stopped at a roadside stand at Velarde, NM which is north of Espanola. Out front were baskets filled with fruit and vegetables for sale with chile ristras hanging all along the front of the building. What we didn’t know was there was a whole store inside an overhang that had all kinds of dried goods; they had a variety of dried beans, dried corn and red chile. We found jars filled with fruit preserves and salsa’s on shelves that looked so good! I ventured over to a table where we discovered packaged ground cornmeal in yellow, blue and red. I’d never come across red cornmeal before and was so intrigued that I had to have a bag. I had no idea what I would make with it but I knew I wanted to try it. It’s been a few month’s since then but I had an idea to make a savory cornmeal scone to eat alongside a pot of beans or soup. Since the cornmeal was red, I decided to enhance the flavor and color by adding roasted red chile and grated Oaxaca cheese. If you haven’t tried roasted red chile, it has a hint of sweetness while still maintaining the heat of the chile. Ever since I discovered roasted red, I’ve been experimenting with new ways to use it in recipes. I really love these scones and think think you would enjoy them too, drizzled with some red chile honey butter alongside a bowl of your favorite soup. I couldn’t decide if I wanted green chile stew or beans so I added some pinto beans to the stew and it was beyond delicious!!
Here’s the organic red cornmeal that I used. Don’t you love the color?
And this roasted red chile is from Los Roast. Even though it’s NM Chile, it’s processed and distributed in Portland, OR. It’s hard to find Los Roast in stores, even in NM. I discovered Los Roast at the Fiery Foods Show a few years ago after we moved back to NM. Since then we always pick up a few jars each year during Fiery Foods to enjoy. But you can also order it at LosRoast.com.
Okay, lets get started. You’ll need a bowl of dry ingredients including flour, red cornmeal, salt, baking powder and sugar. You’ll also need some buttermilk and an egg that have been whisked together. Also some chilled butter cut into small pieces, roasted red chile and grated Oaxaca cheese.
Mix all your dry ingredients together in a bowl. Add the pieces of butter and cut in with a pastry cutter until it resembles a coarse meal with bits of butter no larger than pea size.
Next add 1/2 cup of grated Oaxaca cheese. You can substitute Monterey Jack cheese too.
Roasted chile from a jar has a lot of liquid, too much liquid to add to your scones. Make sure to measure out 1/2 cup of red chile and strain as much of the liquid as possible before adding to the dry mix.
Stir in the red chile and distribute evenly throughout the dry mix so that you will have red chile in every scone.
Begin to add the buttermilk/egg mixture a little bit at a time, folding it in the dry mix until it’s incorporated. Continue adding the buttermilk/egg mix a little bit at a time until you have a moist dough that is workable.
When all the wet ingredients have been incorporated and the dough has come together, transfer to a lightly floured work surface.
Use just enough flour to mold the dough into a rectangle that is approximately 1 inch thick.
Use a sharp knife to cut 8 equal squares.
Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Place a sheet of parchment paper over a baking sheet. Place scones on the sheet leaving space between each one as they will rise and expand while baking. My baking sheet wasn’t large enough to accommodate all 8 so I used 2 baking sheets placing 4 scones on each. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes or until they are crusty on the outside.
I sprinkled a little bit of red cornmeal over top just before I popped these in the oven.
These scones baked up a reddish orange color full of flavor.
Anytime I make cornbread, I whip up some red chile honey butter. I melt the butter then as it starts to cool and become firm I add some roughly ground chile flakes and honey. Whisk it together and let it cool in the refrigerator. It’s so good on any cornbread or cornmeal scones.
Red Cornmeal Scones with Roasted Red Chile
1 1/2 cups Flour
1 cup Organic Red Cornmeal
1 1/2 teaspoon Sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
1 teaspoon Salt
6 tablespoons Butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
2/3 cup Buttermilk
1/2 cup Oaxaca Cheese, grated
1/2 cup Roasted Red Chile, strained of any excess liquid
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Combine the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder and salt in a bowl and whisk together. Cut in butter with a pastry blender until mixture becomes a coarse crumbly mix with the butter pieces no larger than pea size. Stir in the grated cheese and red chile. Separate any clumps of red chile so that it is distributed evenly throughout.
In a small bowl whisk the buttermilk and egg together. Begin to add the buttermilk/egg mixture a little bit at a time, folding it in the dry mix until it’s incorporated. Continue adding the buttermilk/egg mix a little bit at a time until you have a moist dough that is workable. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface. Shape the dough into a rectangle approximately 1 inch thick. Cut 8 equal squares with a sharp knife or a bench scraper.
Place a sheet of parchment paper on a baking sheet and arrange the squares so that there is enough space to rise and expand during baking. Place in a preheated oven for 20 – 25 minutes or until the scones are crusty on top. Serve warm with red chile honey butter or with your favorite soup or stew.
Makes 8 scones.
Red Chile Honey Butter
1/4 cup Butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon Red Chile Flakes, I used roughly ground NM Red Chile
1 tablespoon Honey
Whisk the butter, red chile flakes and honey together. Let cool and refrigerate until ready to spread on scones.
4 thoughts on “Red Cornmeal Scones with Roasted Red Chile”
Dorothy's New Vintage Kitchen
These look really tasty Jan! I will have to see if I can find red cornmeal around here. We have a really nice grain company in town that specializes in ancient grains, including cornmeals, so I’ll check with them first!
I hope you can find red cornmeal at your local grain company. I was intrigued when I found it and it cooks and bakes like any other cornmeal, just has a pretty color.
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Dorothy's New Vintage Kitchen
And, I suspect, a higher mineral content!
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