Monday, 3 March 2014

Scones

Up until around a month ago, I hadn't thought about scones in years.  Well, I might have done, if faced with the choice of eating one in a cafe.
Then we hosted Afternoon Tea and I realised I had no idea how to make a scone.  My friend, The Other Ruth, made them for the tea party.
It turns out there are a gazillion ways to make scones.
With an egg.
Without an egg.
With baking powder.
Without baking powder.
Ad infinitum.
I chose to listen to Delia.

Ingredients:
225g self-raising flour,
40g golden caster sugar (I have never, ever seen golden caster sugar, ordinary caster sugar seems to do the job),
75g spreadable butter,
50g mixed dried fruit (I use just currents),
1 large egg, beaten (I use a medium sized egg, because that is what I buy),
about 3-4 tablespoons milk to mix,
a little extra flour.

Pre-heat the oven to 220C, gas mark 7.
Lightly grease a non-stick baking tray.
You will need a 5 cm plain or fluted cutter.

Method:
Sift the flour into a bowl, add the sugar and rub the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture looks crumbly (you might want to remove any chunky rings prior to this stage).  Sprinkle in the dried fruit, pour in the beaten egg and add 3 tablespoons of milk.
Start to mix into a dough using a knife, then bring the mixture together using your hands.  It should be soft but not a sticky dough, so add more milk (a teaspoon at a time) if the dough seems dry.  Form the dough into a ball and turn it out onto a lightly floured working surface.
Now, with a floured rolling pin, roll it out lightly to a thickness of about 3 cm.  This thickness is vital.  The reasons scones don't rise enough is because they are rolled too thin.
Then take the pastry cutter and tap it sharply so that it goes straight through the dough. Do not twist or the sconces will turn out a strange shape.
When you have cut as many as you can, knead the remaining dough together again and repeat.  Then place the scones on the baking tray and bake near the top of the oven for 12-15 minutes.
When they are done they will have risen and turned golden brown.  Remove them to a cooling tray and serve very fresh, split and spread with butter.
Makes about eight.

How do you eat yours?
How do you pronounce yours?  I say scone with an "on" sound at the end because I am from the North West of England.  The Other Ruth says scone with an "own" sound at the end because she is from Southern England.



13 comments:

Mary Lou said...

I made my first batch of scones last week - your tea post inspired me on that. I made cheese scones & I used eggs. Mine were ok warm, once they cooled, not so good. Cheese ones I don't think need butter. I am going to try your recipe & hope for success. I say scone with an "on" sometimes and sometimes I pronounce with the "own" Umm not sure yet which one feels natural. My favourite place for scones is at a little cafe in Niagara On The Lake (Ontario), complete with clotted cream & jam and pots of tea. Oh so good.

The Quintessential Magpie said...

I am an American, and I think most of us say scone like own. But I am from the American South. They may say it differently up Nawth. ;-) Some Southerners also drop our "r's" at the ends of words like mother and brother... which are pronounced muth-ah and bruth-ah. Think Vivien Leigh in GWTW.

I love scones, but I have never baked them. I like them with clotted cream and jam. I like what we refer to across the pond as biscuits with butter and jelly.

Confused much? ;-)

Question for you:

Where did scones originate?

xo

Sheila

The Quintessential Magpie said...

On this side of the pond, our biscuits are sconish and not cookies. An English biscuit = an American cookie. An American biscuit is generally lighter than an English scone. Not sure why.

Sorry, I am sleepy and slept late this morning. Hope I am making sense. :-)

helena said...

I love scones as are if fresh or with some butter. I often have them with coffee when out in a café. I say 'on' when referring to the tasty ones and oon when referring to the place in Scotland

Missus Wookie said...

I like Delia's version but my favourite at the moment is Nigella's. I say 'on' and am happy to eat almost any scone as long as it doesn't contain dried fruit...

I also make biscuits - the US savoury almost scone, a quick way to bulk out a meal. First time I fed them to my about to become inlaw siblings they waited for Wookie to eat one before daring...

scrappyjacky said...

I love 'scowns'....but my particular favourite are warm cheese scones....delicious.

Ladkyis said...

I like welsh cakes

Deb @ Paper Turtle said...

I pronounce them like your friend, and I have only eaten them a few times but never made them. Our "biscuits" in the US are a bit like the texture of scones but lighter. Yours look yummy!!!

Margaret J said...

No matter how you pronounce the word - these scones are delicious.

Abi said...

My tummy is rumbling just thinking about scones (with an "on")! I always trust Delia too! I like mine with lots of cream and jam or cheese scones thickly spread with butter. Delicious.

Liz said...

They're 'ons' here too. Although you must stop baking them as I think I'm putting on weight just looking at the pictures!! xx

Alison said...

They are most definitely 'ons' for this Glaswegian !...but I can't make them to save myself!!
Alison xx

Miriam said...

I love any type of scone (ons). Haven't made them in ages because I discovered M&S Cheese scones warm from the in store bakery!! delicious, without butter as they never arrive home.

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