Scones made with cream are decidedly rich, but they keep exceptionally well, which is one reason this is an ideal recipe for gift giving. If youd like to add a little crunch, a handful of chopped pecans or walnuts is usually a welcome addition. Presentation Idea: There are a variety of ways to present these tea treats. You can cut them apart and place them in a small basket lined with a pretty cloth. Or buy a few cardboard circles from a bakery, cover with foil, slide the scones onto the circle, then wrap with cellophane and tie with a ribbon and bow. You can arrange the scones around a jar of Ginger-Apple-Pear Butter.
In small bowl, mix cranberries and 2 tablespoons sugar. Set aside. Preheat oven to 400°F. Butter an 8-inch circle in center of large baking sheet, or cover sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
In large bowl, mix remaining 1/3 cup sugar, flour, baking powder, salt and spices. Mix in lemon peel and ginger if using. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add cranberries, and toss well.
In small bowl, mix cream and vanilla. Make well in center of dry ingredients. Add cream mixture. Stir just until dough pulls together. Keeping dough in bowl, knead 3 or 4 times with floured hands.
On floured cutting board, pat dough into 7-inch circle. Slice dough into 6 or 8 wedges, as you would pie. Reassemble slices in center of baking sheet, leaving 1/4 inch between pieces.
Brush scones sparingly with milk, and sprinkle with sugar. Bake until golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool on sheet 1 minute, then loosen scones with spatula. Slide entire batch onto cooling rack. Cool thoroughly before wrapping.