Classic scones – the Cornish way

When scones were chosen as the theme of this month’s Tea Time Treats challenge, I was pretty happy as they’ve been on my to-bake list for a while, and as far as I’m concerned there’s no better way of saying goodbye to winter than with a proper Cornish cream tea.

It wasn’t until I started to look for a recipe that I realised there were so many different versions of the humble scone, and so many things to consider.

Firstly, the flour. Self raising flour? Plain flour and baking powder? Plain flour and bicarbonate of soda? Then there’s the dairy – do you go for milk, buttermilk, cream, yoghurt, butter, no butter… And should they be sweet or savoury? Is adding spices or dried fruit sacrilege?

Faced with so many dilemmas, I eventually settled on this recipe from Jane Hornby, which sounded about right – self raising flour and baking powder, milk soured with lemon and butter. The only change I made was to reduce the sugar and omit the vanilla, as I don’t think scones should really be sweet – that’s what the jam’s for.

As far as I’m concerned, the only way to eat scones is with jam followed by clotted cream – not the other way round, and definitely not with jam and butter!

I did experiment a little, adding a handful of blueberries into my second batch, and eating them with lemon curd instead of jam…

Delicious, but I still think when it comes to scones, the original is always the best!

Classic scones (recipe adapted from BBC Good Food)

Makes 12 small scones

  • 175ml milk
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 350g self-raising flour
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • 1tbsp caster sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 85g butter
  • 50g blueberries (optional)
  • jam and clotted cream to serve

Stir the lemon juice into the milk and heat for 20 seconds in the microwave. Sift the dry ingredients together into a large mixing bowl and rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Slowly add in the milk and cut through the dough with a butter knife, until it’s just starting to come together. If you want to include the blueberries, add them now.

Knead once or twice to bring the dough into a ball, then flatten out with your hands to about 1″ thick. Use a 5cm round cutter to cut out your scones, pressing straight down and not twisting. Place onto a baking sheet, and brush the tops with milk. Bake at 220 degrees on a high self for 9-10 minutes, or until risen and golden brown.

Leave to cool for 10 minutes, then slice in half and serve with jam and clotted cream.

This is my entry for March’s Tea Time Treats challenge, hosted by Karen of Lavender and Lovage.

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16 thoughts on “Classic scones – the Cornish way

  1. Oh, I’m so with you AND your scones look perfect both inside and out. For this challenge I used white chocolate to replace some of the butter and no added sugar. they worked really well, except I rolled them out to thinly so they don’t look half as good as yours. They were best with jam and clotted cream, but I also had them with passionfruit curd and they were pretty good too.

    • I like the sound of the passionfruit curd, I imagine that goes well with the white chocolate… The one tip I saw everywhere when I was looking for a recipe was to roll the dough quite thickly, so I probably over compensated a little!

    • Glad you’re with me on the jam and cream! I have to admit I’ve seen some recipes for savoury scones that I do quite like the look of, they’re just not something I ever actually get around to making…

  2. Pingback: The Second Sitting at the Big Fat Scones Tea Party – Tea Time Treats – Scones – March 2012 « Lavender and Lovage

  3. Pingback: Rosemary and Lavender Savory Scones « Spoon Feast

  4. I found there isn’t enough liquid to even bring it together. I have checked and rechecked measurements and ended up adding extra milk just to bring together. end product was heavy, doughy. Very disappointed. Anyone have same problem?

    • Hmm I’m not sure what to suggest, I’ve checked the recipe and the quantities are correct. The dough for scones is fairly heavy, more so than a bread dough as it needs to hold its shape once you cut it out. Sorry it didn’t work for you though!

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