Monday, November 15, 2010

Raisin Scones

Every couple of weeks we have hot scones for breakfast. Basically a scone is a lightly sweetened biscuit. Beyond the basics, the sky is the limit with scones. You can bake up savory scones with herbs and cheese to serve with a rich stew in the winter or quiche and a beautiful salad in the summer. Of course, small dainty scones with strawberry jam and devonshire cream is a must for tea party. This recipe is tried and true, and it's bona fide since it comes from a bread book written by a British baker. I have adapted it a bit for my taste and I always double the recipe to feed the horde. This recipe is dedicated to my dear friend Sally, who has never been too old for a tea party!

Raisin Scones
adapted from 100 Great Breads by Paul Hollywood

1 2/3 cups unbleached white flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons of baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons of butter
2 medium eggs, beaten
scant cup of milk
1/2 cup raisins
sugar for sprinkling

Mix together the flours, sugar, baking powder and salt. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or by hand (I always use my hands, they are your best kitchen utensil!). Mix together the eggs and milk, then stir into the flour and butter mixture. Knead lightly in the bowl or on a floured surface, adding more milk if the mixture is too dry. Knead in the raisins until evenly distributed. Pat the dough into a thick circle and cut out with a biscuit cutter. For breakfast I use a large size but for a tea party I would use my smallest cutter. Put the scones on a buttered baking sheet and sprinkle them with sugar. I only use raw sugar for baking and it makes the loveliest crust on the tops of the scones. If you only have granulated sugar it will be just fine, but raw sugar is amazing for this. It will make you will make you feel quite fancy indeed! Bake in a 400 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes until golden brown. Serve right away with plenty of butter, jam and devonshire cream. Be sure to wear your best hat!


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