There is nothing quite as satisfying as a warm scone with a cup of tea. Mind you there is nothing wrong with cold scones either! Whether they are sweet or savoury, scones are a wonderful treat at any time of the day. What I love about them, apart from the taste, is their versatility and just how easy they are to make.
Once you have mastered the basic scone you can add a huge variety of ingredients depending on your mood. Raisin and cinnamon, cranberry, orange and walnut or cheese, thyme and rosemary are just a few scone variations you can have fun making. Really when it comes to scones the only that limits you is your imagination!
Today I woke up with a craving for a cheese and chive scone. I had visions of myself sitting in the garden with a large pot of tea and a giant plate of warm scones in front of me. As I was looked through my cupboards to make sure I had the right ingredients, a jar of smoked paprika caught my eye. To be honest I only use it to flavour bolognese and pulled pork, and I wondered what magic it would bring to my scones. I also decided to raid my newly planted herb garden and got a generous handful of garlic chives and flat leaf parsley. The results were simply…DELICIOUS!
I adapted this recipe from JoyfulCook and find it to be one of the best basic scone recipes.
12 ounces / 340g self-raising flour
1.5 teaspoons baking powder
2 ounces / 58g margarine (I used salted butter)
1.5 teaspoons mustard powder
1 Tablespoon Parmesan cheese (I added an extra Tablespoon for sprinkling at the end)
1/4 – 1/2 cup fresh chives, chopped
5 ounces / 140g cheddar cheese, grated
1 cup / 240ml milk, to mix
1 pinch salt
Extras: I also added 3 Tablespoons of chopped flat leaf parsley, 1.5 teaspoons of smoked paprika and 0.5 teaspoon cayenne pepper.
Top Tip: Use vintage cheddar as it has a lot more flavour than the mild version.
Sift the flour, salt and baking powder together.
Rub in the butter and add the mustard powder, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper, cheese, garlic chives and parsley.
Mix well and add the milk to make a soft dough. (You may find you need to adjust the quantity of milk)
Roll the dough out until it is approx. 1 1/4 inches thick. Use a pastry cutter and brush each scone with milk and top with extra Parmesan cheese.
Bake at 220°C / 425°F / gas mark 7 for 7-10 minutes (mine took about 3-5 minutes longer)
Makes approximately 16 scones, which you can share or if you are like me save them all for yourself!
The smoked paprika gives the scone an intense warm and spicy kick
Add everything to the mixing bowl
Roll it out
Pastry cutters are a worthwhile investment
Brush on some milk
Sprinkle some Parmesan