Friday, 15 June 2012

Easy Buttermilk Scones

I only started making scones successfully last year after a lifetime of trying and failing but there’s no stopping me now – I can rattle off a batch of scones at the drop of a hat! One thing, however, has been bugging me: after stamping out the scones with a cutter you have to bring the dough together again and cut out another couple to finish up the dough – well, those last couple of scones are never as light and fluffy as the first ones. I needed to work out an answer to this conundrum….

Well, Mr Simply Veg and I were reminiscing the other day about corner shops (remember those?) that used to be near our homes when we were children (about a million years ago!) – he mentioned a shop he knew that was like Arkwright’s on ‘Open All Hours’ and I remembered a bakery where we used to buy warm Hot X Buns on Good Fridays…are you still with me? It came to me from the deep recesses of my memory that said bakery used to sell wedge shaped scones, presumably in order to avoid wasting any dough. There you have it, I found my answer – it’s scone wedges for me from now on!

It doesn’t answer the question, though, of why almost every recipe I have ever seen tells you to make round scones…it’ll just have to remain another one of life’s impenetrables.

225g self-raising flour

1 tsp baking powder
50g unsalted butter 
50g caster sugar
125ml buttermilk, approx

a little sugar for sprinkling

Sift the flour and baking powder together in a large bowl; rub in the butter until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar then mix in enough buttermilk to give you a soft but not sticky dough (I usually add 125ml then see how it feels and add another couple of teaspoonsful if it needs it).

Knead the dough very lightly then pat it out with your fingers on a lightly floured surface to a circle about 3cm deep.

Using a very sharp knife cut the dough into eight segments and transfer to a baking sheet. Sprinkle with a little sugar.

Bake at 200C for about 12 minutes. If the scones cosy up together a bit while they’re cooking, just pull them apart whilst they’re still warm.

Serve warm with plenty of butter, cream or jam (or possibly all three!)

Makes 8

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