Homemade Scones For Tea

I was watching Nigella Lawson work her easy-kitchen magic on telly about two weeks ago, and there she was, waxing lyrical about the scones that she was about to make. She promised that the scones take only 15 minutes to materialise, and I was almost convinced that I should make them sometime soon.

You see, I am one who needs to be inspired to make something. Without inspiration, my cakes turn out dry, my macarons look like pimply teenagers and I sulk for the rest of the day just because. Where does this inspiration come from, you might ask? Sometimes, I just want to make something pretty. Most of the times, I want to feed people I love with good things. Nothing gives me greater joy than seeing my family and friends enjoying what I made. Sad to say, we don’t get many opportunities to have people over all the time, and the only person I do really feed is my husband, M.

Since the feedback on my food is only about as varied as M’s fervent nods or halting ‘erms’, I am also inspired by practicality. Having learnt a lot more about baking and cooking over the past year, I have grown to love looking into my pantry and rummaging for stuff to make something delicious. The idea that I am making full use of whatever’s left in the kitchen and the idea that it could turn out to be something out-of-this-world excites me. Yes, I am a miserly food geek.

For the scones this time, I’m inspired by everything. Nigella Lawson made the baking look effortless. I had shortening that I bought for making mooncakes a while ago (and I couldn’t find any recipe else to use it in…). I also had one egg left, a little bit of butter much neglected in the fridge, lots of flour and milk just dying to be used before it expires. M loves a good scone. My sister-in-law was also chatting to me about how much her boyfriend misses scones. It was the perfect time to whip up some for an English tea-esque lunch to test Nigella’s recipe.

The recipe turned out to be beautifully easy. I put everything together very quickly with minimal effort, and the scones were ready to be devoured in all of 15 minutes, just as Nigella had promised. The scones were golden, nicely risen, slightly crusty on the outside and fluffy and tender on the inside. We slathered the warm innards with butter and golden syrup or jam (we didn’t have clotted cream). It was divine! It costs nothing more than 50 pence to make six of these babies, so why in the world would I pay £5-20 for an English tea session outside the comforts of my own home? I say, make your own, save some money and have them warm and fresh, something that you can’t quite get when you’re out.

Here’s the recipe.

(adapted from How to be a Domestic Goddess by Nigella Lawson)

165g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
1/3 teaspoon salt
2/3 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
8g vegetable shortening, cold and diced (I used Trex)
17g butter, cold and diced
100ml milk
1 egg, beaten

1. Preheat oven to 220 degrees Celsius. Line baking tray with parchment.
2. Sift flour, salt, bicarbonate and cream of tartar together.
3. Rub in shortening and butter into dry mixture.
4. Add milk and mix briefly for the dough to just come together as a sticky mass.
5. Add a dusting of flour to a work surface, and knead dough very gently till the dough just about stops being sticky (the dusting of flour will help reduce the stickiness).
6. Roll out to 2.5 cm thick and cut out with a 5.8cm cutter (mine has a crinkle edge and the 5.8cm refers to the round cutter that is found on the other side of the same mould). Brush with egg wash. You should get 6 scones out of this.
7. Plonk the dough pieces on the tray and bake for 9 minutes until golden and nicely risen.


Check out what I have been baking in my own kitchen.

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14 Responses to “Homemade Scones For Tea”

  1. 1 xiao meh meh December 11, 2010 at 5:03 pm

    please bake and cook when you return. singapore needs you!

  2. 3 Jennie @ Oh, Sweet Day! December 12, 2010 at 3:21 am

    I love all things Nigella…she never ceases to come up with yum-worthy recipes, just like these fabulous looking scones! Great job!

  3. 5 Jun December 12, 2010 at 4:58 am

    The third photo makes my mouth waters…

  4. 7 brainybairn December 12, 2010 at 12:34 pm

    Oh yum! I love scones! I’ll have to say that YOU inspire me to try these stuff! BTW, I found out why I was struggling with my greaseproof paper when rolling out the Kampar chicken biscuits! LOL! I got baking paper and it’s been a breeze making cookies and all!

  5. 9 Joy December 12, 2010 at 3:39 pm

    I have all the ingredients in my pantry! Except for Shortening…is there a replacement for it?

    • 10 The Pleasure Monger December 12, 2010 at 8:35 pm

      Joy: You can use butter, but the texture might turn out to be denser than if you were to use shortening. Shortening imparts a crumbly and lighter texture to baked goods. But I’ve seen recipes that use only butter, go ahead if you want to!

  6. 11 Lady J January 10, 2011 at 3:24 am

    What a pretty pic! I love how you ‘dress’ up your food for your blog posts :)

  7. 13 itsybitsybrianna June 5, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    THESE look perfect-o
    stop by and say hi

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About The Author
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Read about my food-gasmic adventures in San Sebastian here! Also please come by and check out the prettiest cake I've made over here!
Macarons: Be Inspired
Dark Chocolate & Coconut Cookies
Rose & Lychee Chiffon Cake
Pan-seared scallops, jamon iberico chip, pomme puree, jamon iberico foam and chestnut
Red Velvet Cake
An English-themed Dessert Table
Chocolate & Hazelnut Salted Caramel Cake
Gula Melaka Salted Caramel Buttercream Macarons
The Ispahan Cake
The Ispahan
Sunflower Seed Macarons with Black Truffle Salted White Chocolate Ganache
Lemon Cupcakes with Lime & Ginger Whipped Cream
Portuguese Egg Tarts
Ba Zhang - Glutinous Rice Dumplings with Braised Pork Belly
The Fat Duck
Strawberry and Cream Pancakes
Pandan Souffle Roll with Toasted Coconut Whipped Cream
Red Velvet Cake
Lychee and Emperor's Seven Treasures tea-infused macarons
M's Spanish Paella
M's birthday cake - Japanese Cheesecake with Rose Whipped Cream
Lor Bak Gou - Fried Radish Cake
Pandan Chiffon Cake
Homemade Scones
Marmite & Coffee Pork Chops
Quick and Easy fried rice recipe!
Matcha & Adzuki Bean Macarons
Pumpkin & Chocolate Brownies with Cream Cheese Swirls
Matcha, Milo and Plain Polvorons
Kampar Chicken Biscuits - A popular Malaysian snack
White Chocolate & Cranberry Cookies
Hustling the Xiao Long Bao in my kitchen
Bailey's & Coffee Macarons

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