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Follow these simple rules to make perfect scones:
- Preheat oven to 200°C 15 minutes before making scones. A hot oven is essential to cook evenly risen, golden-brown scones with crisp crusts.
- Cook scones in the top half of the oven. Adjust shelves before turning on the oven.
- Grease a flat baking tray with a little melted butter only where you intend on putting the scones.
- Always measure then sift the flour. Sifting adds lightness and removes large lumps.
- Only use butter and use it straight from the fridge. Cut into small cubes, then add to flour. Rub in with your fingertips only. Using the palms of your hands will cause the butter to melt and the result will be oily scones.
- The water and milk mix is used because water adds lightness and milk adds flavour.
- Use a table knife in a cutting motion to mix liquids with flour. Do not over-mix or you will make tough, heavy scones.
- Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead gently with your fingertips until dough just comes together. Pat out till about 2.5cm thick. Do not roll.
- Use a sharp cutter on dough. Do not twist cutter, it causes unevenly risen, lopsided scones.
- Bake dough immediately. Wrap cooked scones in a clean tea towel or linen serviette to give a softer crust.
- Scones should be eaten within a couple of hours of baking.
1. Preheat oven to 200ºC. Brush an oven tray with melted butter. Sift flour into a large mixing bowl. Add cubed butter. Use your fingers to rub butter into flour until there are no large lumps left.
2. Make a well in centre of flour and butter mixture. Combine milk and water, add to flour mixture then stir with a table knife until a soft dough has formed. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface, and knead with your fingertips until mixture just comes together. Press out dough by hand to about 2cm in thickness.
3. Cut out scones with a 5-7cm round cutter. Place scones, just touching, onto prepared tray. Cook for 12-15 minutes until well risen and golden brown. Serve warm with jam and cream.