Pancetta, Pear and Parmesan Scones
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 pound pancetta or bacon
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus 6 tablespoons cold cut into cubes
- 1 pear, cut into small cubes
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- Pinch kosher salt
- Pinch sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped rosemary leaves
- 1 cup heavy cream, plus more for brushing
- 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan, plus extra for garnish
Coat a small skillet with olive oil and cook the pancetta over medium heat until it is crisp. Drain on paper towels; break it up into pieces when it is cool. Wipe out the skillet and heat 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat until it starts to brown; be careful not to let it burn. Add the pear cubes and cook them until they are soft but still holding their shape, about 5 to 7 minutes. Set aside on a plate to cool.
Heat oven to 450 degrees F.
Sift into a bowl the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. Add the remaining butter and cut it in with a pastry blender or your hands until it resembles coarse bread crumbs. Stir in the pepper, rosemary, and pancetta. Add the cream; mix just until the dough has come together. With floured hands, gather the dough into a ball and place it onto a floured surface. Divide the dough into 8 pieces and form them into balls. Place them onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Press a well into the center of each with your thumb, place 1 teaspoon of the cooled cooked pears into the well, and pinch the scones closed. Sprinkle the tops with the cheese. Bake the scones for 12 to 14 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown. Remove from the baking sheet and cool on a wire rack. Sprinkle with some more parmesan.