So, last August my parents and I spent a week in Ireland, which has been on my bucket list since I was like 14 (and read a Nora Roberts trilogy set in Ardmore with hot Irish guys and cool music…but I digress). And you know what I was probably most excited about? Scones. Well, and good beer. But also scones.
I flipping LOVE scones, and was so excited to try them in their “birthplace” (or close enough). We went to Queen of Tarts in Dublin, I had them in Cashel, basically anywhere we went. Great excuse to have lots of cappuccino too. They came in all shapes and sizes, textures and flavors, moist or dry, etc.
I have a bunch of different scone recipes, but this is my go-to because it’s so easy, takes normal ingredients, and almost always turns out perfectly. Plus, it’s super versatile, you can try with orange juice, lemon zest, and brown sugar, or maybe vanilla and cinnamon, or even savory additions. The full recipe makes about 20 scones, but since it’s just me I’ll sometimes make 1/3 of the recipe when I’m craving them.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Combine dry ingredients well. I love substituting whole wheat flour for about half of the flour called for (tastes better AND is healthier).
Cut in the butter. I usually freeze beforehand to make it easier to work with.
Cut the butter into the dry ingredients with a pastry blender until small crumbly pieces. This is a little bigger than it probably should be, but still turned out okay.
Add the rest of the wet ingredients and stir into dough. Don’t over-stir, just enough to get it to mostly stick together. It’s important not to over-handle the dough, or it will get tough and won’t be fluffy. Then gather it into a ball with your hands and place on a lightly floured surface.
Gather the dough into a ball (lightly floured all around it), then pat out into a circle or square about 1/2 – 1″ thick (I’d err on the side of 1″). If circle, use a pizza cutter to cut into wedges (just like a pizza) or if square you can cut into rectangles then diagonally to make triangles.
Place on a cookie sheet and bake for 10-15 minutes. The scones should be puffed up and golden brown.
Basic Easy Scones
3 c. flour (I use about half whole wheat flour)
1/2 c. white sugar
5 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
3/4 c. butter
1 egg, beaten
1 c. milk (I use buttermilk instead)
Combine all dry ingredients. Cut in butter (I freeze it so it’s easier to work with). Mix in egg & milk, don’t over-stir. Roll out dough (1/2-1″ thick), cut into wedges. Bake at 400 for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
P.S. I tried making homemade jam for the first time (without pectin) and it was the easiest thing ever! Here’s my recipe.
I’m curious to know how other people adapt these, add flavors and ingredients, etc. I’m usually too lazy to do anything but the basic recipe. Let me know what I’m missing out on!
Updated: As a side note, I made these over the weekend to pinch-hit for the shortcake in strawberry shortcake, and they were awesome. You can still cut into pieces or cut into biscuit rounds.