Its been a very grey day here in Shropshire, and i wanted to feel at least a little like we aren't knee deep in winter (even if my warmth was provided by the boiler instead of the glorious sunshine)
So, I decided to give some love to the best of all British bakes, the humble scone!
Vanilla buttermilk scones, which I will snaffle later with some cream and jam.
I LOVE scones, both sweet and savoury (cheese and bacon scones, I'm looking at you here, you sexy beast)
They remind me of summer, when me and my sister Maria would go down to the Cotswolds with our parents, and the treat after a day of wanderings was a cream tea in Bourton-on-the-water.
I always do buttermilk scones instead of baking powder and milk, just because I think it makes them a little more rich, but however you make them, they're utterly, deliciously, British.
So the question is, cream or jam first??
450g Self raising flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
100g Unsalted butter
90g Caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla paste or extract
1 tablespoon milk for glazing
Oven at 220*c.
Mix self raising flour, baking powder and a pinch of salt and rub in the cubed cold butter till it resembles breadcrumbs (you can do this is a processor if you have one, its much quicker), then add in caster sugar and stir.
In a measuring jug mix the buttermilk, along with the vanilla paste or extract (make sure you use the good stuff) and pour into the flour mixture and bring together with your hands till it forms a dough, careful not to overwork it.
Wrap in clingfilm and rest in the fridge for half an hour.
Roll the mixture to about 3cm thick and cut out with a cutter, place into a greased and lined baking tray, brush with a little milk, sprinkle on some sugar and bake for about 10 minutes or until they have a nice golden brown colour on top.
Cool and serve.
If you want that line down the middle roll the dough out, brush with a little milk and fold it back over itself then lightly roll again and cut.
These work with the addition of both currants and chocolate chips, just add to the dry mixture before you add the liquid.
For a real summer treat whip up some whipping/double cream with a splash of vanilla essence and a few tablespoons of icing sugar, this with strawberry jam tastes like a summer strawberry sundae and is utterly delicious!!