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Maple Nut & Pear Scones

From: EatingWell

Delicate pears, pecans and maple flavor make these scones really special. Our makeover of this tender, flaky breakfast pastry uses reduced-fat cream cheese, canola oil and just a touch of butter to replace 1 1/2 sticks of butter. The addition of rolled oats and whole-wheat pastry flour boosts fiber and enhances the nutty flavor. For more fruit intensity, serve with pear butter.

Servings: 1 dozen scones
Prep: 30 mins
Total: 1 hr
Rated : Not yet rated
1 cup  whole-wheat pastry flour
1 cup  all-purpose flour
1 cup  old-fashioned rolled oats
1/4 cup plus 1 1/2 teaspoons  sugar, divided
2 teaspoons  baking powder
1/2 teaspoon  baking soda
1/4 teaspoon  salt
1 teaspoon  ground cinnamon
4 tablespoons  chilled reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel), cut into small pieces (2 ounces)
2 tablespoons  chilled butter, cut into small pieces
1/4 cup  canola oil
1 cup  diced peeled pear, preferably Bartlett (1 large)
1/2 cup  chopped pecans, or walnuts, divided
3/4 cup  low-fat buttermilk, or equivalent buttermilk powder
1 teaspoon  maple extract, (see Note) or vanilla extract
1   egg lightly beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for glaze
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or coat with cooking spray.
2. Combine whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, oats, 1/4 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl; whisk to blend. Using a pastry blender or your fingertips, cut or rub cream cheese and butter into the dry ingredients. Add oil and toss with a fork to coat. Add pear and 1/4 cup nuts; toss to coat. Mix buttermilk and maple (or vanilla) extract in a measuring cup and add just enough to the dry ingredients, stirring with a fork, until the dough clumps together. (It will be sticky.)
3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead several times; do not overwork it. Divide the dough in half and pat each piece into a 7 1/2-inch circle. Cut each circle into 6 wedges and transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Brush the tops with the egg glaze and sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup nuts, pressing lightly. Sprinkle with the remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar.
4. Bake the scones until golden and firm to the touch, 20 to 30 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool slightly before serving.
Note: Maple extract, which can be purchased in the spice section of the supermarket, contains the essential flavors of maple syrup, usually diluted with alcohol. Maple syrup cannot be used as a substitute. Products labeled "maple flavoring" usually contain imitation or artificial ingredients.
MAKE AHEAD TIP: The scones are best served the day they are made. Wrap any leftovers individually, place in a plastic bag or container and freeze for up to 1 month. For a quick weekday breakfast, wrap a frozen scone in a paper towel and microwave on Defrost for 1 to 2 minutes.
Nutrition Facts
Calories 233, Total Fat 12 g, Saturated Fat 3 g, Monounsaturated Fat 5 g, Cholesterol 9 mg, Sodium 204 mg, Carbohydrate 29 g, Fiber 3 g, Protein 5 g, Potassium 101 mg. Exchanges: Starch 2,Fat 2.
Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet

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