No one likes to think they're becoming more and more like their parents, especially when it's a trait that you have always found mildly irritating and you don't see it in yourself until it's already full-blown and then you sit, wide-eyed, wondering how on earth it happened. Dear friends, it's happened to me.
My Dad is a horrible conversationalist. He can smoke a chicken like nobody's business, and he can change the oil in your car in less than ten minutes, but ask him to stay on a single subject in conversation for more than eighteen seconds? No chance. It irritates the pants off my Mom, we'll be driving around town, he's boring us with chatter about concrete prices at Lowe's and then suddenly it's, "...it's around fifteen dollars a bag and...did you see the size of that fox!?" Mom and I exchange shifty glances, roll out eyes, and then he comes back around with, "Sorry, what was I saying?"
Now because I come from the sort of family that doesn't just let things go, and because this little glitch of his has gotten worse, we had to make a mountain out of a mole hill. A few months back, during one of his side-tracked spells, I mumbled something about him seeing a shiny nickel mid-sentence and how it was enough to completely break his train of thought. It developed into my mother and I mumbling, "Nickel...nickel...nickel" every time he starts to rabbit-trail, which, of course, only distracts him more.
He'll just sit there, frozen mid-gesture, brow furrowed furiously and looking desperate to find his thoughts again. Bless his heart, he's the cutest. He's had a few outbursts every now and again, where he waves me away and says, "Stop! You're distracting me!" Of course, that only fuels my antagonistic fire. But just the other day I received the King Arthur Baking Catalog and inside the glossy pages was this recipe, and it became my nickel. It was everywhere, stealing my thoughts, my attention, my focus. I had to make them, I couldn't get back to whatever it was I was doing until I did. Priorities, people.
These are a bit different than the cream scones I so adore, they're much sweeter, almost like a cookie, and studded with chocolate chips. While most scones have a short shelf life, these will keep for several days thanks to the blanket of sugary glaze wrapped around them. Plus, they're bite sized, so you can eat say...fifty or so, before the guilt starts to set in, or before you realize that you are now completely off topic from what you were saying. Which ever comes first.
Chocolate Chip Petite Scones
Adapted from King Arthur Flour
2 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 cup cold butter, cut in pats
1 cup to 2 cups mini chocolate chips, or finely chopped semisweet or bittersweet chocolate
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract or the flavoring of your choice
1/2 cup to 2/3 cup half and half or milk
3 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
7 tablespoons water, enough to make a thin glaze
1 teaspoon vanilla, optional
In the bowl of a food processor, blitz together the dry ingredients, about 5 seconds. Add the pats of butter and pulse until it resembles coarse sand. Move the mixture to a large bowl and stir in the mini chocolate chips or chopped chocolate.
In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, vanilla or other flavor, and 1/2 cup half and half or milk.
Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until all is moistened and holds together. Stir in additional milk or half and half if the dough seems dry, and doesn't come together.
Scrape the dough onto a well-floured work surface. Pat/roll it into an 8" to 8 1/2" square, a scant 3/4" thick. Make sure the surface underneath the dough is very well floured.
Cut the square into 2" squares; you'll have a total of 16 small squares. Now, cut each square in half diagonally, to make 32 small triangles (I used a pizza cutter.)
Transfer the scones to a parchment-lined or well-greased baking sheet. They can be set fairly close together; you should be able to crowd them all onto a half-sheet pan.
For best texture and highest rise, place the pan of scones in the freezer for 30 minutes, uncovered. While the scones are chilling, preheat the oven to 425°F.
Bake the scones for 19 to 20 minutes, or until they're golden brown. Remove the pan from the oven, and allow the scones to cool right on the pan. When they're cool, cut each scone in half once again, to make a total of 64 tiny triangles. Don't be too particular here; in fact, if the scones are already a size you like, don't bother to cut them again.
Make the glaze by stirring together the sugar, water, and vanilla. If the sugar seems particularly lumpy, sift it first, for an extra-smooth glaze.
Dip the bottom of each scone into the glaze and transfer to a cooling rack (put a piece of parchment underneath to catch the drips, there will be lots!). Using a pastry brush, coat the tops and sides of the scones with the remaining glaze (I got desperate toward the end and ended up dipping my brush into the dripping underneath - no shame in it).
Allow the glaze to set before serving the scones. Scones will keep in an airtight container for about 5 days.