For those of you who love Christmas as much as I do, these Christmas in July Breakfast Scones are for you! The taste of Christmas in the middle of summer!
Dear Reader, if you’ve been reading or following Lord Byron’s Kitchen for any length of time at all, you must be aware of my Christmas obsession/addiction/compulsion. If not, then please take a moment to peruse my Christmas section here. Pay special attention to our annual Christmas posts, but don’t forget to check out those Christmas recipes too. After all, Christmastime is about indulgence, so don’t stop at Christmas in July Breakfast Scones!
Christmas in July is actually a thing. I thought it was just an excuse for summer camps to throw a party and string colourful lights, but I was wrong. The origin of the Christmas in July phenomenon is not very clear. It is believed to have started in Europe, as a way to celebrate Christmas in summer. During the summer months, when the weather becomes increasingly hot, many people (myself included!) begin to long for the coolness of fall and the coldness of winter.
There are many lovers of Christmas out there who miss the gift giving and the Christmas spirit. Christmas in July first started showing up in the 80s when people started hosting parties that resembled the parties usually seen in December. These parties came complete with a Santa Claus, presents, and sugary treats – mostly in the form of slushies and ice cream.
I read that Christmas in July is often attributed to a group of Irish tourists who went for a vacation in Australia’s Blue Mountains in the summer of 1980. They were surprised by the cooler temperatures and were happy to see snow in July. As the story goes, they convinced the owner of a local bar to hold a party to mimic a Christmas party. Apparently, the party was a huge success and the idea of Christmas in July was born.
Today, the tradition is still going strong and many establishments even offer Christmas type meals in July. Even the local gift shops and hotels offer special discounts for the occasion. Purchasing ornamental Santa’s are just as easy in July as it is in December, which is the result of marketing genius, of course. Christmas in July is about celebration, and celebrations are just cause to spend more money. Companies are out to make money and they have pushed the notion of Christmas in July to mainstream popularity and have boosted sales in the process.
In the United States, like all other festivals, this event too has become highly commercialized. It is often used as a marketing tool than as an actual holiday celebrated by ordinary people. Still an unofficial holiday, the event is has become popular among the younger generation. In America, restaurants offer special discounts, nightclubs host Christmas themed parties, and television executives capitalize by using the occasion to re-run Christmas specials.
Whether you celebrate Christmas in July or not, the purpose of this post is not to encourage you to run out and start tacking Christmas lights to your eaves, but to satisfy that craving for a Christmas treat. To be completely honest with you, I never really understood why the only time we enjoyed the tastes of ginger, cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg together was at Christmas time. Old-time Christmas flavours are the ultimate in comfort food and tradition. I, for one, am all to happy to whip up a batch of breakfast scones at Christmastime in December, July, or any time of the year, for that matter!
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Christmas in July Breakfast Scones
- 1 large egg
- 3/4 cup light sour cream
- 3 tablespoons salted butter, room temperature
- 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 3/4 cup mixed candied peel
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk together the egg, sour cream, and butter until well combined.
- Add all other ingredients in the order listed, except for one heaping tablespoon of the mixed candied peel. Stir into the wet mixture until just incorporated.
- Turn mixture out onto a floured surface. Gather the dough together and press firmly into a flat round about 10 inches in diameter and about an inch thick.
- Sprinkle the reserved mixed candied peel evenly over the top and lightly press into the dough.
- Cut dough into 8 even wedges. Transfer to baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove from oven, allow to cool for 5 minutes and serve still warm or at room temperature.
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