Thanks for joining me on my blog - feel free to use, adapt and enjoy all the recipes here and make suggestions too - I take requests!

Thursday, 9 June 2011

A Perfect Scone

Everybody seems to have their own recipe for the perfect scone, but to be honest some are pretty bland, more turn out like rock cakes and some are like flying saucers. 

Follow my recipe and steps below and I’ll help you make delicious, sweet scones that everybody will enjoy!


150g butter (at room temperature)
450g self raising flour (or 450g plain flour and 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda)
Pinch salt
80g caster (superfine) sugar
3 medium eggs
90mls buttermilk

1.      Preheat the oven to 220oC
2.      Rub together the butter, flour, salt and bicarbonate of soda (if using) until the mixture is like breadcrumbs
3.      add the sugar and mix through
4.      beat the eggs and buttermilk together
5.      Add 2/3 of the egg/buttermilk mixture to the dry mixture and bring together with your hand, add more if the mixture is too dry but be patient and don’t add extra until you’ve worked the mixture a bit!
6.      Roll out to ½ inch thickness on a floured surface and using a scone cutter cut into 10 or 12 scones
7.      Place the scones on a lined baking tray and brush with the left over egg/buttermilk mix
8.      Bake in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes (depending on how thick you’ve made them)
9.      Place on a wire rack to cool slightly
10.  Enjoy!

Before you add the egg/buttermilk mixture you can add other ingredients to make your scones more you!  My suggestions:
  • Currants
  • Sultanas
  • Dried blueberries
  • Dried Strawberries
  • Dried Bananas
  • Frozen Rasberries

If you can’t get buttermilk you can make a substitute – recipe below:
400ml milk
Juice of ½ lemon
Heat the milk gently until it is warm, remove from the heat and add the juice of ½ a lemon.
Leave at room temperature overnight.

The equipment you use is also important, below is a picture of mine!

A large mixing bowl is essential but it doesn’t need to be an expensive ceramic job, my cheap and cheerful plastic bowl has served me well for over 5 years now.
A good notebook is essential as you may wish to tweak recipes, I recommend you write them down in black pen and make any adjustments in green or red, leave plenty of space between recipes for amendments and make any recipe you use your own!
I use a basting brush to brush on egg whites for 2 reasons:
  1. I like that it can withstand high temperatures so I can us it for other things such as brushing melted butter on a pan when making pancakes
  2. I broke my pastry brush!
I use a clever little masher for breaking up the butter, I’ve got warm hands which is not the best for pastry making as the butter tends to melt in my hands when I’m trying to crumb it but this gadget means I don’t have to handle it too much.
I also have a set of measuring spoons, I know everybody has teaspoons and probably tablespoons in their kitchen but I like having a single tool and not having to search around in the kitchen drawers, usually when I have flour on my hands, for a tablespoon!
A good solid rolling pin is essential, for threatening the hubbie as much as for rolling out the scones!  I like my wooden one, I’ve had it for years, a friend did buy me a marble one once but it was too heavy to work with.
A digital weighing scale is also useful, cooking is great for throwing things into a pot and getting a great result but baking is alchemy, you must get the ingredients in the right ratio in order to get the right results, guestimating is not an option!
Wire cooling racks are also essential for cooling, some baked items, such as scones, are great straight from the oven but soda bread (which I’ll be doing in a few weeks time) will give you gas if you eat it too warm and no-one wants to break bread with a farting Freda!

Please leave your questions as comments and I’ll answer them.