Scones are one of the earliest things I attempted to bake from scratch rather than from a packet mix. It’s seemingly simple with a short and easily-accessible list of ingredients and no complicated technique involved. But of course the simplest things are always the hardest to get right, precisely because there is so little to be done that it is so easy to overdo.
Over the years there has been much frustration with various recipes combined with my mother’s old electric oven yielding differing degrees of success/failure. Recipes with butter. Recipes without butter. Recipes asking for the butter to be rubbed in. Recipes asking for the butter to be melted. Recipes with plain milk. Recipes with buttermilk. But, most importantly, recipes none of which gave the resulting fluffy scones I wanted.
Finally baking in a reliable oven helped, but what helped most – well, in my opinion anyway – was finally trying out a recipe from the Country Women’s Association, whose famed scones can be found at the Royal Easter Show year on year. The recipe involves using cream which seems to help in keeping the scones fluffy and slightly crumbly, although perhaps me not adding quite enough flour may have had something to do with the crumbly part as well. Hmmm…
I decided to get a little bit Asian and split the dough in half; leaving one half plain and mixing pork floss and nori strips through the other like those soft buns found in Asian bakeries. The plain ones I preferred to have with the jam and cream, whilst the savoury ones worked well with butter spread on them. If done again, I just need to remember to ensure the nori is well-incorporated as exposed bits on the surface tend to burn!
Making these scones also gave me a chance to use part of our wedding gift from Wifey and strawberry jam brought back to us from a road trip by Mistress. Thank you again to the two special women in my life, for this and much more.
CWA Scones (makes about 12)
I scribbled this recipe down from somewhere but can’t actually remember where it came from. Multiple internet searches have proven fruitless for a recipe with the exact same ingredient amounts, although it just about matches various CWA recipe proportions.
- about 2 cups self-raising flour
- 1 tbs caster sugar
- pinch of salt
- 180mL milk
- 125mL thin/pouring cream
- Preheat oven to 230°C. Combine flour, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Add milk and cream then stir with a flat-bladed knife until dough comes together. It should be soft and slightly sticky – add more flour if it’s too sticky to handle, add more milk if too dry.
- Turn dough out on a floured surface and gently pat to 2cm thick. Cut scones using a floured 7cm cutter and place close together on a lined tray lined with baking paper. Bake 10-12 minutes then transfer to cool on a wire rack.