Introduction: How to Make Scones
Scones are the easiest and quickest and yummiest things to make. They're basically just flour, butter and milk. Here in New Zealand, the ability to whip up a batch of scones is considered an essential part of womanhood. If you even think about using a recipe the CWI (Country Women's Institute) shows up on your doorstep to collect your uterus. They Know Everything.
New Zealanders make scones for lunch, and they can be sweet or savoury. This is a recipe for savoury scones, but to make sweet ones, (such as one might enjoy with whipped cream, jam and the Queen is she is avaliable) add a couple of spoonfuls of sugar to the flour mixture.
Step 1: Butter
Cut about 30g of butter off the block - you don't have to be precise
Step 2: Chop It Up
like a knife though...well, you get the idea. The colder the butter the better the product. New Zealanders like to keep their butter in the cupboard. This yields rancid tasting butter, but it is the only weight loss technique available to New Zealanders so it is perhaps best not to sneer.
The old adage is true here - good bakers have cold hands and a warm heart.
Step 3: Flour!
Chuck a couple of handfuls of self raising flour in the bowl. You can also use regular flour and just add some baking powder. Also, throw in a teaspoon of salt and a teaspoon of sugar. The sugar helps grund up the butter in the next step....
Step 4: Crucial Step
The reason you don't need a recipe is that you can tell what the mixture should look like. Rub the butter into the flour with your fingers. People say it should resemble sand, BUT WHAT SORT OF SAND?? There are so many types of sand, and most of it tastes very bad - ask anyone learning to kitesurf for verification.
A better judge is to squeeze a handful of mixture and if you get a bit that keeps its shape, then you have about the right ratio. If it is too clumpy, add more flour. I took a picture of this step especially! Take special note of the 'bits' of 'stuff'
Step 5: Adding Stuff
I think scones came from Scotland, which is why they ended up being popular in New Zealand. Now, traditionalists will sneer, but you can add very good things to scones, and before you know it, you'll feel way less unctious and Presbytarian. Sundried tomatoes and pumpkin seeds are excellent diversions. Just make sure you drain the tomatoes on a paper towel, because you don't want too much extra oil in your mixture.
Step 6: Milk!
Add enough milk to make the mixture look gluggy. Add it slowly, because you can always add more, but you can't do much with over-wet gluggy scone mixture (well, you can, but there are laws).
Dollop them onto a greased tray and stick them in the oven at about 170C for about 20 mins or until they are golden. Here I have added a slice of cheese to make them Gourmet Scones.
Step 7: Mmmm
Remove from oven and grab off tray whilst still hot enough to remove extraneous dermis. Run around house, yelping 'Ow hothothothot!'
You have successfully made scones.
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