Category: Recipes,About,Baking | Post by: Andrea Wong
I'm really bad at making scones. I really really am.
What is it about this quick, and supposedly easy, baked good that has me stumped? Most other baked goods come out great - lemon curd sour cream cake, macadamia chocolate tartlets, baked cheesecake, meringue... no problem.
But scones, oh my scones! They come out of the oven just edible and by the time they have cooled down, I am afraid to feed them to the birds in case they fall out of the sky because they are so heavy!
Now if I was making rock cakes, they would be perfect. But no, they are meant to be light and fluffy scones. Solid, heavy and dry is how I would describe my typical batch. Needless to say, I don't attempt at making them too often!
Many a friend and relative have given me their hints:
- Work quickly
- Make sure that the butter is cold
- Use a knife to mix in the flour
- Make sure the oven is hot
People have even given me their 'fool-proof' recipes, including a couple of versions that use lemonade, but with no success. I must admit that these fool-proof recipes result in a slightly better scone than my usual recipe, but they still aren't up to the standard that I want - a light and flakey scone.
Making scones is the one thing that truly has me scratching my head - I don't know where I've gone wrong. Please help me and share with us:
What are your tricks to making a good batch of scones? Clearly I need help!
Disclaimer: ... and no, the scones in this post's photo are not of my own creation
- they are courtesy of the local supermarket. I did manage to put the
jam and cream on successfully myself, though :)
Update: 18 September 2009
Annabelle White made buttermilk scones on TVNZ this morning. She had some great tips:
- Grate the butter
- Use buttermilk
- Don't over mix
- Have the mixture wetter than you would think
- Use the fanbake setting on your oven
Fantastic segment, Annabelle. You must have read my post and decided to help me out! ;)
Watch the video of Annabelle White making scones
Annabelle White's scone recipe
I will try out your tips and Annabelle's recipe and will let you know how I go.
Update: 10 October 2009
I can't believe it - I made a good batch of scones! I used Annabelle White's recipe, using buttermilk. I was a bit apprehensive while making the scones, given my terrible track record, so they weren't very pretty... but they tasted great! They were light and fluffy: d'lish!
However I feel like I kind of cheated using buttermilk. The true test of a great scone is to use ordinary milk, I think. I believe that scones should be a quick, cheap, whip-up-any-time kind of recipe and having to spend over $3 on buttermilk (and having to go out and buy some) seems to defeat the purpose.
So, huge thanks Annabelle White, for restoring my confidence in making scones. My next mission is to make a great scone using ordinary milk. I will use all of your tips and will see how I go... wish me luck!
Update: 21 January 2010
Now that I've had some success with scones, I have felt confident enough to show you what they look like. I still need to master how to make a pretty scone, but I think that I've come a long way from those rocks that I used to bake!