Unsuspecting visitors are startled when they order scones from a Utah menu. Instead of the biscuity clotted cream receptor they were expecting, they are served a piece of fried dough. No one can really say why Utahns call these scones. They’re obviously related to sopapillas, Navajo fry bread, even New Orleans beignets, but not English high tea.
Skye Emerson got this recipe from “a Mormon grandma who fries them in lard.” You can use peanut oil, safflower oil or any oil with a high smoking temperature.
6 cups flour
2 cups milk
3 Tbsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. salt
1/4 cup butter
2 1/4 tsp. yeast
Dissolve yeast in 1/4 cup warm water. Allow to soften, and stir once. Combine all ingredients in a medium mixing bowl, stirring in flour one cup at a time. Beat until smooth after each addition. Knead dough 5 to 10 minutes until smooth. Add enough flour in the kneading process so that the dough will not be sticky. Don’t use more flour after kneading.
Place dough in a clean, lightly oiled bowl and cover. Allow to rise until double in bulk.
Punch down. Knead dough lightly and pat out to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut into squares and fry.
Let a pound of butter sit out of the fridge until it comes to room temperature. Using an electric mixer or a lot of elbow grease, beat the butter until it’s creamy. Dribble in 1/4 cup honey and blend.
Secret ingredient: 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
If you like it runny, beat in another 1/4 cup honey. Otherwise, chill the butter mixture in the bowl until it’s stiff enough to roll into a log in waxed paper.