The Dumpling Diary

Dis cooking so you cooking too.

Scones of Yore! November 19, 2010

Oh, scones.
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Every day, I go to work, and after I’m done frying up, dipping, sprinkling, filling and traying up doughnuts, I move on to tea biscuits. The obtuse, tired old cousin of dear, sweet Missus Scone. By the end of the week, I’m so tired of goddamn tea biscuits, I have to force myself to create “innovative,” varieties like sage & onion, or cheddar-dill. Do they sell? I do not know. At least it’s a meager form of personal therapy/preservation of sanity for me.
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Well, here’s a thought. A slight tweak of shape, a sprinkle of sugar, and old-timey British snobbery is just the ticket! My current cultural tangent sent me a message, a voice straight from Jane Austen’s Regency-era England. It said, “Megohm, on this blustery night, I beseech you to reacquaint yourself with the forgotten fullsome delights of buttery quickbreads! Forget the monotony of a day’s work and make scones, at my behest!”  Who am I to question such statements?!
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Good old scones. What’s better with a cup of tea on a cold, windy night? With a  little jam or marmalade, for the sweet tooth? Anyhow, last night, I dug through some of my olde English cookbooks, and settled on a recipe for the quintessential scone, and adjusted as I saw fit. It worked out quite nicely!  I used my scale, since it was such an old recipe, it was in weight (which I prefer, working in a bakery will get you used to that in no time). I’ll post the weight, along with imperial units of measurement as well. These are some big-ass scones, by the way. Here’s the recipe!
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Ingredients
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1 lb all-purpose flour (4 cups)
5 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp nutmeg
2 oz white sugar (4.5 Tbsp, use more if you like)
2 oz butter (4 Tbsp)
a handful of raisins, currants or dried cranberries, dates, whatever you like. (Optional)
1.5 – 2 cups of milk (or you can use some cream) – Use what you need. I’ll ‘splain.
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Method
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Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (moderate oven!). In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, nutmeg and sugar, mix well to combine. Cut in butter with a pastry cutter, two knives or your hands, until the size of small peas (plus some little crumbly cornmeal-esque bits). If you’re adding dried fruit, add it now. Stir in enough milk, starting with 1.5 cups, adding more as you need to, to make a soft dough, not too sticky, but pliable, not crumbly. Turn out into a ball, onto a baking sheet (don’t grease). Pat down with hands into a circle, 1 inch thick. Using a knife, carefully (you don’t have to be TOO careful, but just so it looks pretty and clean) cut into 8 wedges: Cut in half (moons), Cut those in half, and then cut your quarters in half, so you have 8 roughly even pieces. Don’t separate them though! Cut after baking. Brush the top with cream or milk, and sprinkle with sugar. Put ‘er in the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, until nicely browned around edges, and the scones have a little “give,” when you poke them. They shouldn’t cave/sink in, they should spring back, in the most pitiful way possible. Not super-springy like a cake, but just so you know they’re cooked inside. Fluffy, and so forth.
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Lo and behold, scones!
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5 Responses to “Scones of Yore!”

  1. Christine Says:

    Meg, u crack me up, I am in tears reading your post…but thanks think I will try to make some scones…savoury ones…cheddar dill sounds yummy.

    How about some receipe for easy cut out sugar cookies and royal frosting like my good friend Wendy makes.

    Enjoy ur site..keep it up..u rock.

  2. That jam looks yummy 🙂

  3. Maria Nell Says:

    Hey Meg,

    I was just wanting to try this scone recipe but I wanted to ask you how long will they keep after you bake them?

    Will I just need to refrigerate them or wrap them up and leave them out?

    Thanks!

    -Maria

    • Meg Says:

      Hi Maria,

      No, you won’t need to refrigerate them, but yes, definitely keep them wrapped up in something airtight, ziploc bag or something of the like. They’ll keep for a day or two, but they’re best eaten fresh.


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