Monday, December 28, 2009

Please Come For Tea And Scones

Maybe it's the English in me or maybe it is the sheer comfort of tea and scones. I think it is both. Afternoon tea in Greenwich, England last week just warmed me to the soul. Scones with clotted cream or whipped cream and jam are referred to as Cream Tea. Since the USDA frowns when I bring clotted cream back into the US, I whip unsalted butter until it is light and creamy to substitute this delight. Strawberry or raspberry jam are traditionally served with the scones and cream. A nice hot cup of tea never had better company. Fruited scones have raisins or currants which I'm not crazy about. Today I tried golden raisins, which have a milder flavor, and I liked them. You may also put dried cranberries or cherries, or fresh blackberries or blueberries in them. They are not traditional, but they sure are good! There are many scone recipes around with different theories and mine comes from the old American standby, "The Joy of Cooking." I know a winner when I taste it.

(Adapted from the "Joy of Cooking")

Preheat oven to 450 degrees

Sift together in a large bowl:
1 13/4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

Cut into these ingredients, until the size of small peas, using a pastry blender or 2 knives:
1/4 cup cold butter

Beat in a separate bowl:
2 eggs

Reserve 2 tablespoons of this mixture. Stir into the flour/butter mixture and beat in:
1/3 cup cream
1/3 cup raisins, currants, cranberries or any other dried fruit that you desire

Put in any dried fruit and stir. Make a well in the dry ingredients. Pour the liquid into it. Combine with a few swift strokes. Handle the dough as little as possible, or it will be tough. Place on a lightly floured board. Pat into a 3/4-1 inch thick circle. Cut into 2 inch rounds or pie shaped wedges. Brush with the reserved beaten egg and sprinkle with sugar.Place on a greased or nonstick baking sheet and bake for about 15 minutes or until golden brown.Makes 12 scones. Serve with whipped unsalted butter and jam.
Scone recipe click here.

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