Hachland Hill Scones

A Nashville chef pays tribute to his famous grandmother with this adaptable recipe

Photo: Danielle Atkins

Phila Hach was a well-known culinary pioneer. In her younger days, the Nashville-born chef served as an American Airlines flight attendant and collected over three thousand recipes from international chefs. She hosted the first televised cooking show in the South. Hach authored seventeen cookbooks, including recipe collections for the 1982 World’s Fair, Opryland USA, and Cracker Barrel. She catered meals for members of the United Nations and even served as the pastry chef for Princess Diana’s wedding.  

In the 1980s, Hach founded Hachland Hill, an eighty-acre retreat on a parcel of land in Nashville’s Paradise Hills, a remote, forested area that had been in her family for generations. Thirty-five years later, Carter Hach, who grew up cooking alongside his illustrious grandmother, took the reins as the executive chef at the inn.  

In the recently published Hachland Hill Cookbook, Carter Hach celebrates his grandmother’s legacy through a story of her life and a collection of her recipes. One recipe that’s beloved among the bed-and-breakfast guests are the scones, though he admits that no batch is the same. “I have worked that recipe a million times now, with savory applications, sweet remedies, and even cornbread versions as a nod to the South,” he writes. “I make our scones on the fly, improvising with whatever is available, to create a unique treat every time in the spirit of Phila’s ‘country cooking’ philosophy.”


  • Hachland Hill Scones (Yield: 8 large or 16 small scones)

    • 2½ cups bread flour

    • 1½ tbsp. baking powder

    • ¼ cup sugar

    • ¼ tsp. salt

    • 1 stick unsalted butter

    • ½ to ¾ cup white chocolate (or other desired filling such as fruit, herbs, cheese, sausage, or other)

    • Zest of 1 lemon

    • 2 tsp. dried rosemary

    • 1 whole egg

    • 1 egg yolk

    • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract (if desired)

    • ½ to ¾ cup heavy cream, plus more for brushing

    • Sugar for sprinkling (or use desired seasoning)


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Mix the flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt together in a large bowl. Cut the butter with a bench scraper or knife into dice-sized cubes. Cut the cubed butter into the dry ingredients until it gets down to pea-sized pieces. (If it is cut up too fine, the final product will not be as flaky.)

  2. Add the white chocolate, lemon zest, and rosemary (or your choice of filling) to the flour mixture. Lightly whisk the whole egg, egg yolk, vanilla, and ½ to ¾ cup of cream together in a small bowl to combine. Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients all at once. Mix with your hands until a dough forms. (Do not overwork; it should be soft and just come together.)

  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Pat and round out the dough with your hands until it’s ¾-inch thick. (These raw scones may be refrigerated for two days or frozen for one month.)

  4. Using a bench scraper, cut the dough round in half then cut each half into quarters, like pie slices. Place the scones on a sheet tray lined with parchment paper, then brush with heavy cream and sprinkle with sugar (or desired seasoning). Bake the scones for 10 to 15 minutes, until golden brown on the bottoms and around the edges. Remove from the oven and brush with more cream while still hot, and sprinkle with more sugar.

Reprinted with permission from The Hachland Hill Cookbook: The Recipes and Legacy of Phila Hach, by Carter Hach, published by Blue Hills Press. Text and photographs © 2022 Blue Hills Press.