Jun 20, 2013

Scones with Raisins

As an American, when I think of scones I think of what we call biscuits. Fortunately, I have an English neighbor.  My first offering to her as scones tasted exactly like biscuits and were heavy too.  So, I have tried to make this recipe several more times until I think that it is right.  Scones are supposed to be light, airy, and sweet, except when you are making savory ones.  I tried and tried to duplicate the commercially made ones that she brought down to my house.  They are small and very thick.  Then she made a comment to me.  "It isn't what they look like, but, more importantly how they taste."  I found relief in her comment.  I threw away several blobs of too wet dough when trying to follow a recipe that I found on line or the one my neighbor gave me. I then decided to make them how I make biscuits.  



This morning I woke up at 6 a.m. and decided to try again.  I had spare time before I had to pick up my sister.  I made my way to the kitchen a few minutes later and was determined to get this recipe right.  The key is not to handle the dough too much.  My mother used to tell me the same thing when making biscuits. The dough is to be wet/sticky,but not like a thin batter.  I watched a couple of videos on Youtube to see how English ladies (some men too) make scones. English self-rising flour doesn't have salt in their mix. I added extra baking powder to help give the scones a lighter texture, even though the American self-rising flour mix already has it in.



Ingredients:

2 cups of self-rising flour
1 stick of butter, cut into small pieces
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup of sugar
1- 1 1/2  cups of plain milk or buttermilk
1/4 cup of raisins or dried fruit of your choice

Preheat oven to 400 - 425 F. Grease a baking dish. In a large bowl add the flour, baking powder, and sugar.  Next, add the butter and cut it into the flour mixture until it feels like sand. I used my fingertips and rubbed the flour and butter together. Then add the raisins and mix together.  Make a well in the middle of the bowl and pour in 1 cup of milk.  Mix well, if the dough is too dry add enough milk to form a soft dough ball. Do not knead and don't add all of the milk at once. The dough should be sticky. Handle it as little as possible.

Pour the dough onto a lightly floured surface.  Flatten the dough into a 1 inch circle.  Use a 2 inch cookie cutter and cut out scones.  This recipe makes 8-10 scones.  Place the scones on a baking sheet.  Brush the tops with milk to give a nice brown color.  Bake for about 10-15 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve immediately.  Enjoy!