True English Scones Should Rise and Split
I find way too many flat or dense scones when I travel. Why have we neglected the art of making a traditional English scone? And forget about those half-pound triangle things you find in pastry shops!
Sometimes we just need to go back to square one and start from scratch.
Shelley Richardson is a master of the art of making scones. She and her staff served over 100,000 of the heavenly creations during her run as owner of the Elmwood Inn Tea Room (1990-2004).
She prefers her English scones to rise and split. This makes it easy to break open the delicious treats for spreading with cream and preserves.
By popular request, here is the scone recipe found in her first cookbook, A Year of Teas at The Elmwood Inn.
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tablespoon cream
1 tablespoon sugar
Preheat the oven to 400º F. Lightly grease a large baking sheet. Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and soda. With a pastry blender, cut in butter, mixing it until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Mix in currants if desired.
Whisk buttermilk and egg together, then add to flour mixture. Stir together until a soft ball of dough forms. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently, turning five or six times. Do not overwork dough.
Roll out dough with a floured rolling pin to about 1/2 inch thickness. Using a round cookie cutter, cut scones out and place on the baking sheet. Brush the tops lightly with cream and sprinkle with sugar.
Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until light brown. Serve warm with lemon curd, clotted cream, or preserves. Makes one dozen scones.
Time Saving Hint: Raw scones may be frozen and then baked as you need them. Add a couple of minutes to the bake time.
Buy Elmwood Inn Scone Mix online.