I don’t believe I know a single Irish woman who doesn’t know how to make a good cup of tea and a few scones when the occasion calls for it. Although, with the ease of obtaining good scones at local bakeries many choose to simply buy them. I tried making scones several times over the years and nearly every time they came out funny; either too flat, hard, sweet, or just plain un-tasty. Since I love a good scone with my afternoon tea, I found it necessary to learn from a “pro.”
Ms. “P,” is a wonderful lady and dear friend who has been baking scones from the time she was a child, probably well over 60 years if I should hazard a guess. I like to walk over to her house from time to time with my little girl for a good visit and rarely do I leave without tasting something she has been baking. When my mom came to visit this year we decided to ask Ms. “P” to teach us the art of making good scones. She says hers are “harmless,” but I disagree, they are quite wonderful in my opinion. When baking Ms. “P” rarely uses measurements other than a baking scale; so mom and I had to estimate the amounts to write down our recipe in American measurements. Thankfully, we must have got it about right since our duplicate attempts have all turned out pretty amazing, if I do say so myself. I’ll include the recipe here just-in-case you want to give it a go.
Ms. “P’s” Irish Scones Recipe
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup plain yogurt
- 2+ cups of self-rising flour ~500grams
- ½ cup white sugar ~120 grams
- 2-3 TB butter
- ½ cup raisins or sultanas ~100grams
Mix the eggs and yogurt together.
In a separate bowl use your hands to crumble flour and butter together. Add sugar and raisins. Then add the yogurt/egg mixture but be sure to save out about 1-2 TB of this mix to spread on top of the scones.
Stir the mix until mixed, not stirring too much, it should be a little sticky and wet, if not try adding a little milk a teaspoon at a time. If it is too “wet” or sticky to form, sprinkle a little flour on the dough one tablespoon at a time. Flour your hands and then form the dough quickly into rough balls. Place on an ungreased baking tray. Lightly spread a little of the leftover yogurt/egg mix on the top of the scones and then sprinkle lightly with sugar.
Her oven is one that is hooked up to her heating system so it remains on at all times and does not have a good temperature reading for baking. She says she simply watches it to see when it is done. We timed it though and it took 22 minutes. In my fan-assisted oven I bake them for approximately 15 minutes at approximately 350⁰F or 150⁰C, my oven runs a little hot so I have to check them often. They should be lightly brown on top and fluffy in the middle.
Top with good Irish butter, jam, and fresh cream.
As typical here, I buy fresh cream and then use a mixer for about 30-60 seconds to whip it. My sister-in-law adds a little sugar and vanilla to hers for those who like it a little bit sweater.