HELLO everyone! Since my moving to London is already a month ago, I thought I’d give the world an update. London has been amazing so far, I’m really enjoying British culture. Of course it’s imperative that I try to Become British whilst I live here… I figured the best way to do that is to learn how to make proper scones.
I had actually never had scones before I moved to London. Let me tell you all… it was love at first bite. 😉 For those of you who don’t exactly know what they are: scones are small treats to enjoy with your afternoon tea or at your Sunday brunch. Or for breakfast. Or dessert. Or as a midnight “I’m sneakily walking to the fridge” snack. They’re seriously good any time of day. I would describe them as the perfect hybrid child of bread and cookies: crunchy outside but deliciously soft on the inside like bread.
Traditionally, scones are served with clotted cream and jam. It appears that something of a war (yes, it is that intense) is going on between people on How To Properly Decorate Your Scone. The British take this very seriously so you might want to take this into consideration before you order a scone. The Cornish tradition is to spread the jam on the scone first, followed by the cream, but in Devon people prefer the other way around. In March this year, the debate was somewhat settled by the Queen, because the truth about her scone habits were revealed.
My scone-eating habits appeared to be not very Queenlike, as I myself prefer the Devonshire method because I think the colourful jam pops more if you put the jam on last!
After having many, many scones (of which the healthier spelt & quinoa scones at Le Pain Quotidien are probably my favourite), and after watching a ton of YouTube films and reading loads of recipes, I took the matter to my own kitchen. And now I present to you for the first time: scones à la #cheftori!
CRANBERRY ORANGE ZEST SCONES À LA CHEFTORI
Yield: around 10-12 large scones
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- ¾ cup cubed unsalted butter (room-temperature)
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- ½ cup almond flakes or any nuts you prefer
- 2 tbsp freshly grated orange peel
- 1 cup buttermilk (for my fellow Dutchies: buttermilk is karnemelk)
- ⅛ teaspoon of salt
- 1 tbsp full-fat milk
Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. Cut in the butter using your hands till you get coarse crumbs. Do not overmix! It’s okay to have some lumbs in there. Stir in the cranberries, nuts and orange peel. Then, mix in the buttermilk using a fork just until incorporated. Knead the dough with your hands for just a few seconds and roll it out on a floured surface until 2/3 cm thick. Use any circle-shaped utensil to get nice scones. I used a small and a large size to create mini scones and larger ones. Bake for 12 to 15 mins (depending on size of scones) on 200 degrees Celsius on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. I baked my mini scones in a muffin tray! Serve with delicious clotted cream & jam, or alternatively, replace the clotted cream with fresh ricotta or cottage cheese for a less caloric option.
I was really happy with the way these scones turned out. If you really have a sweet tooth, try using 1/2 cup of sugar instead of 1/4 cup. I found that that much sugar was not necessary because the jam will give so much sweetness too! I really enjoyed this cranberry & orange peel version of scones, because it made them really fresh. I am looking forward to perfecting these scones and trying out different varieties. I’ll definitely try to make a more “healthy” version soon, so keep an eye out for that 😉
Thanks guys for checking out my recipe and please do try this at home! Let me know when you do.