Two summers ago, my mom gave me a basil plant kit for my birthday. It was one of the smaller pots, only about 1½ inches high, with 5-8 seeds inside.
I had talked about wanting to grow my own herb garden since high school, complete with basil, rosemary (my two favorites!), and maybe a few like parsley and oregano. We already had a bay leaf tree in our backyard, so I wanted to round out the spaghetti ingredients in our garden!
But after planting a few seedlings, we immediately learned that the deer ate everything. (Well, except for the geraniums. Those things grew into massive bushes without any help!) So that herb garden dream was put on hold.
However, after killing quite a few potted flowers during college, I was afraid that I’d kill that little birthday basil starter kit within a week, so I put off planting it for a few days… Then a few weeks… Then a few months… And it’s still sitting on the shelf above my desk.
So my mom bought me a cactus for my next birthday.
(And yes, I killed that too. Turns out they do need water every once in a while.)
Because of my brown thumb, I tend to bake and cook more with dried herbs rather than fresh. But on the rare occasion that I splurge at the grocery store, I always end up using about a spring or two of the fresh when I buy a package, and the rest goes to waste. So when Gourmet Garden asked if I’d like to try out their new Lightly Dried Herbs, I jumped at the chance!
Their new line of Lightly Dried Herbs is somewhere between fresh and dried. (Although I suppose that was obvious…) They smell as fragrant as fresh, but when stored in the refrigerator, they last up to 4 weeks after opening the container. That’s perfect for people like me who only use a little at a time! So I opted to use their Lightly Dried Basil—my all-time favorite herb—to make these Tomato Basil Scones!
Like all of my scone recipes, these savory ones only contain 2 tablespoons of butter, compared to the 8-16 tablespoons in typical recipes. The rest of the soft texture comes from Greek yogurt and tomato paste. The former gives them a little protein boost, while the latter provides the pretty pale red color and a slight background taste. But the basil is the flavor that truly shines here!
Just before baking, brush the outsides with milk. This creates a lightly crisp outside crust, which contrasts beautifully against the supremely soft interior. With all of that yogurt, the soft insides practically taste as if you’re eating pillows!
I brought a few of these Tomato Basil Scones to my coffee date with one of my best friends from high school. (She actually works in a bakery as her full-time job!) After her first bite, she replied, “These would be perfect alongside eggs and bacon—or as the bread for a sandwich!”
I kind of finished off the rest already… So I guess it’s time to make more so I can try that!
*Note: This post was sponsored by Gourmet Garden. All thoughts, text, recipe, and photographs are my own.