A tiny slice of my life

This is a look at my life, and the many things I try to learn and do.

Friday, January 27, 2012

The First Bakers Challenge for 2012 - January Scones

Well I hope everyone had a good Australia Day yesterday.

We took Miss Fish, fishing we didn't catch anything but she was happy with the couple of nibbles she got and the fact that she got to go fishing.

Afterwards we got fish and chips for lunch and Mr CLI suggested that we go to the Botanical Gardens to eat it. What we didn't realise is that there was Australia Day celebrations on there.

It didn't matter we found a car park and ate our lunch under a very large tree. As the weather was beautiful not too hot with a nice breeze it was a very pleasant experience.

Now for the first daring Bakers Challenge I made to batchs one plain which we had with jam and cream, as you should and also a cheese batch.

To the basic recipe I add 1 cup grated tasty cheese, 1/2 tsp dried english mustard and 1/2 tsp paprika.

Audax Artifex was our January 2012 Daring Bakers’ host. Aud worked tirelessly to master light and fluffy scones (a/k/a biscuits) to help us create delicious and perfect batches in our own kitchens!

Basic Scones (a.k.a. Basic Biscuits)
Servings: about eight 2-inch (5 cm) scones or five 3-inch (7½ cm) scones
Recipe can be doubled
1 cup (240 ml) (140 gm/5 oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
2 teaspoons (10 ml) (10 gm) (⅓ oz) fresh baking powder
¼ teaspoon (1¼ ml) (1½ gm) salt
2 tablespoons (30 gm/1 oz) frozen grated butter (or a combination of lard and butter)
approximately ½ cup (120 ml) cold milk
optional 1 tablespoon milk, for glazing the tops of the scones
1. Preheat oven to very hot 475°F/240°C/gas mark 9.
2. Triple sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl. (If your room temperature is very hot refrigerate the sifted ingredients until cold.)
3. Rub the frozen grated butter (or combination of fats) into the dry ingredients until it resembles very coarse bread crumbs with some pea-sized pieces if you want flaky scones or until it resembles coarse beach sand if you want tender scones.
4. Add nearly all of the liquid at once into the rubbed-in flour/fat mixture and mix until it just forms a sticky dough (add the remaining liquid if needed). The wetter the dough the lighter the scones (biscuits) will be!
5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board, lightly flour the top of the dough. To achieve an even homogeneous crumb to your scones knead very gently about 4 or 5 times (do not press too firmly) the dough until it is smooth. To achieve a layered effect in your scones knead very gently once (do not press too firmly) then fold and turn the kneaded dough about 3 or 4 times until the dough has formed a smooth texture. (Use a floured plastic scraper to help you knead and/or fold and turn the dough if you wish.)
6. Pat or roll out the dough into a 6 inch by 4 inch rectangle by about ¾ inch thick (15¼ cm by 10 cm by 2 cm thick). Using a well-floured 2-inch (5 cm) scone cutter (biscuit cutter), stamp out without twisting six 2-inch (5 cm) rounds, gently reform the scraps into another ¾ inch (2 cm) layer and cut two more scones (these two scones will not raise as well as the others since the extra handling will slightly toughen the dough). Or use a well-floured sharp knife to form squares or wedges as you desire.
7. Place the rounds just touching on a baking dish if you wish to have soft-sided scones or place the rounds spaced widely apart on the baking dish if you wish to have crisp-sided scones. Glaze the tops with milk if you want a golden colour on your scones or lightly flour if you want a more traditional look to your scones.
8. Bake in the preheated very hot oven for about 10 minutes (check at 8 minutes since home ovens at these high temperatures are very unreliable) until the scones are well risen and are lightly coloured on the tops. The scones are ready when the sides are set.
9. Immediately place onto cooling rack to stop the cooking process, serve while still warm.


  1. Gorgeous looking scones! Welcome to the Daring Bakers! Hope you are having as much fun as I am!

    1. Thank you for your comments, yes the daring baker challenges can be very challenging.

  2. Welcome to the Daring Bakers from across the Tasman in New Zealand. Can tell from your photo that you've made scones before - they just look right. I liked reading that you still have your Chinese and Entertaining recipe books - I'm thinking that they are Aust.WW books. I've kept all of mine - they were like gold nuggets when I was starting out cooking here in New Zealand in the early 1980s- we used to have to ask someone who was going over to Australia to bring us one back - some of my first ones have the price on them $3.99 !!! The original Children's Birthday Cake Books go for a fortune on Ebay . Happy baking .

    1. Thank you for your comments. Yes I have been making scones for years, they are a staple when my husband makes his veggies soup every winter. Cheese ones to have with the soup and plain with jam and cream for dessert. I do have a copy of the ww children's cookbook which I have used for my girls birthdays starting about 23 years ago. Sadly all the use has taken its toll because the cover has Coe away from the rer of the cookbook.