When I was a child my mother made a lot of scones. Since we lived in the country, it wasn’t easy to run out to buy a loaf of bread. Whenever we ran out of bread, mostly during the weekends when we were eating her out of house and home, she’d whip up a batch of scones. I remember cheese scones, warm from the oven, slathered with butter and date or sultana scones heaped with jam and whipped cream. My mum made excellent scones.
In the past I’ve tried making scones, with mixed results. Although the ingredients are basic, they’re tricky to make.
Here are some tips I’ve discovered along the way:
1. Work quickly and don’t over handle your scone dough.
2. Pre-heat the oven. Scones should be cooked in a super hot oven.
3. Most scone recipes tell you to rub in the butter. I find it easier and quicker to grate the butter into the dry ingredients.
4. The dough should be on the moist side rather than dry.
5. New Zealand cook, Alison Holst suggests that if you have problems with your scones, don’t make plain ones where every imperfection is evident. Try pinwheel scones or twist-type scones.
3 cups plain flour
4 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
50g butter/ .44 stick butter
1 + 1/2 cups of milk
Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a mixing bowl. Grate in the butter. Add the milk and mix quickly without overmixing (most important!). Place on a floured board and roll lightly until about 15mm (3/4 inch) thick. Cut into squares or use a cutter to cut out rounds.
Bake in a hot oven pre-heated to 230C (450F) for 10 minutes.
Makes around 16 scones
1. I added cranberries to my scones – around 1/2 cup. You can add sultanas, chopped dates or add cheese to make savory scones.
2. I cut my scones a little bigger and ended up with 14.
3. I served my scones with cherry jam and thick Greek yoghurt I’d made. Normally, I’d go for jam and whipped cream.
4. If you have trouble with scones try this recipe-Date and Orange scones-with cream and Sprite. It’s pretty fail proof.
Are you a scone fan? Is there a recipe from your childhood that you like to make?