Studded with cranberries and chunks of crystallized ginger, these scones tend to disappear quickly after they emerge from the oven! Unlike so many scones on the market that are heavy and dry, these use buttermilk to stay light and tender. While they're best eaten the day they're baked, you can store them in an airtight container for a day. The recipe makes 12 scones. If that's too many for your household, consider freezing some of the formed, uncooked scones; to cook, defrost overnight in the refrigerator and bake as directed.
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven, and preheat to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
Place the flour, sugar, baking powder, and baking soda in the bowl of a food processor and pulse to blend. Add the butter cubes and process until the butter is incorporated and the mixture resembles coarse meal. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and add the orange zest, cranberries, and ginger.
Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and add the buttermilk, using your hands to pull the dry ingredients into the liquid. Mix only until just combined; overworking the dough will make the scones tough.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter or board and gently knead it once or twice. Divide the dough in half and pat each ball into a flat circle about 3/4 inch thick. With a sharp knife, cut each circle into 6 pie-shaped wedges. Transfer the scones to the prepared baking tray. At this stage, the scones may be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated overnight or frozen for up to a month. When ready to bake, brush the top of each scone with some of the heavy cream and sprinkle with sugar, if desired.
Bake until the scones are nicely browned and the top surface cracks, 20 to 30 minutes. If the scones are cold when placed in the oven, they'll take a few minutes longer to bake. Serve warm with butter.