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All Butter Scones

All Butter Scones

Ingredients

400g strong white flour, like Marriage's Finest Strong White Bread flour
5g (3/4 tsp) Saltan Himalayan Super-Fine Pink Rock Salt
30g (6 tsp) baking powder, like Bioreal Organic Baking Powder With Pure Cream Of Tartar
120g unsalted butter

For the liquid

20g (4 tsp) caster sugar
100g milk, whole or semi-skimmed
100g plain yoghurt or buttermilk
50g double cream

beaten egg to finish

easy to makeThough it may seem strange to be using a bread flour in something as light and delicate as a scone, it really helps to give the crumb lightness. What’s known as “plain flour” can be made from any quality of grain, better suited to making soft cookies and brownies, whereas strong flour requires the millers to buy and mill high-quality wheat which is what cake makers and bread bakers really need. So to keep the texture tender I’ve added a generous amount of butter, and made the usual milk and yoghurt combination richer with a good measure of double cream. This way you get light scones with a delicate crumb and a great flavour.

I’ve added some tweaks at the end that you can experiment with. It is a truth universally acknowledged, to cadge off Jane Austin (no doubt a scone fancier), that every cook prefers their own scone recipe and method best… and is appalled by everyone else’s effort. So use this recipe as a starting place for your own scone excellence.

Makes 12

Method

Put the flour, salt and baking powder in a mixing bowl. Add the butter and rub it through with your fingertips until there are only small flecks of butter remaining.

Add the liquid and mix through into a smooth dough. Pat or gently roll the dough out to about 2-3cm thick, then cut into rounds using a sharp cutter. Place on a baking tray lined with non-stick paper and brush the top with beaten egg.

Heat the oven to 200C and bake for about 15-20 minutes until golden on top and light to touch.

Tweaks to try

1. If you want a flakier crumb keep more flecks of butter through it, or even grate the butter in.

2. Bumpy and rough-looking scones have a lighter texture compared scone made from dough that’s been well-kneaded. So go gently and light-handedly with your dough shaping if lightness matters more that appearance.

3. Try patting the dough out quite thinly then fold it in upon itself by halves or thirds, to get a deep scone thickness. This will also help to create breaks in the scone layers as it bakes.

4. Once the scones are cut you can chill them for 30-60 minutes, as this will help them rise evenly.

5. Bake them close together on the tray, or even in a roasting tin, so that the hot blowing air of a fan oven won’t be able to distort the scones shape as much.

6. Whisk the egg using a fork with a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of water, this will make it easier and smoother to brush over the scone tops.