Scones are a quick bread or cake and are the foundation of the British ‘cream tea’. They were originally made with unleavened oats and baked on a griddle, but have evolved to be made with wheat flour and a rising agent. Some countries, such as American, still use the term ‘scone’ to describe the original scone. It is also not to be confused with the potato scone (a common component of an Irish fry-up), so dropped scones (a smaller American pancake). Scones can be made both sweet and savoury.
There is little more satisfying than a freshly baked scone, warm out of the oven and spread generously with clotted cream and a dollop of your favourite jam. This deceptively simple bake can take numerous attempts to master. Here a my top tips for a perfectly light, risen and golden scone:
1. make sure your ingredients and your hands are cold when you’re rubbing in;
2. avoid using strong, bread or wholemeal flour as these result in a heavier texture. The softer the flour the better;
3. don’t overwork the dough;
4. use a sharp cutter or knife when cutting out your scones. A blunt cutter will stop them from rising properly, and finally;
5. don’t over-bake your scones as this will dry them out.
What are your top scone tips? Do you have a favourite scone recipe; cheese, fruit, chocolate chip?
Here are two of my favourite scone recipes; one sweet, one savoury: