Recipe: Scones and Strawberry Jam

Author: Ed Schmeltzer

Photographer: Zoe Lockhart

I fear that I may have made a serious mistake. I’m not sure I’ll survive the next holiday. I can hear the angry mobs back home in London, sharpening their pitchforks and lighting their torches.[1] I have made, as they say back in the old country, a slight cock-up. Somehow, I’ve produced something like a year of these things, and have somehow not produced an article on scones.

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(Cue gasps)

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If British pastry is Endgame spoilers, scones are the scene when Ant-Man chows down on Thanos’ ear like Mike Tyson[2]. If British pastry is the late 2018 rap/country crossover genre, scones are Lil Nas X. So, you can see why the fact that I’ve never addressed them is a bit of a problem. Luckily for you (I guess) and me (definitely, given the mobs will be called off), I have decided to tackle this most foundational of pastries, in a way that is quick, easy, and at least relatively tasty!

Before we get into the crunch, however, I think it might be worth exploring just what the hell a scone is.[3] Scones are not the odd triangle things that people here apparently associate with the word scone. Instead, they are much more like a biscuit. Indeed, I am fairly certain the biscuit is a descendant of the scone.[4] In any event, picture a fluffier, sweetened version of a biscuit, and there you have it. Scones are excellent with breakfast, or, most traditionally, with butter and jam.

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Strawberry jam.

Which we are also going to make.

Surprise extra recipe! Yay!

 Right. Enough dilly dallying—let’s get into it.


Strawberry Jam

 Ingredients:

  • 2 cups strawberries

  • 2 cups sugar

  • 2 slices of orange rind

  • 1 cinnamon stick

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Instructions:

  1. Slice and mash the strawberries into a paste. Combine this paste in a saucepan with the sugar and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Add orange rinds and cinnamon.

  2. Simmer gently on medium heat for 5-10 mins. At the end of the cooking time, scrape off the foam at the top of the jam and fish out the cinnamon and orange.

  3. Let cool slightly and decant into a jar. Store in fridge for up to three weeks.[5]


Scones

 Ingredients:

  • 10oz flour

  • 4 tsp baking powder

  • 2 tsp salt.

  • 1/3 cup sugar.

  • 3 oz butter.

  • 2/3 cup buttermilk

  • 1 egg.

  • 1 tsp cinnamon

  • Small dash of vanilla

Instructions:

  1.  Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar in a bowl. Whisk until evenly combined.

  2.  Add the butter (cut into half-inch cubes), and mix using the tips of your fingers until the flour-butter mixture looks pebbly.

  3.  Mix buttermilk and egg separately. Whisk to combine.

  4.  Add the buttermilk and egg mixture to a well in the center of the flour. Combine with a spatula until a shaggy dough is formed.

  5.  Turn this dough out onto a heavily floured work surface. Lightly knead until the dough comes together, but not too much—over kneading results in dense hockey pucks instead of scones.[6]

  6. Roll out to around a ¾—1-inch thickness. Use the top of a glass to cut out round scone shapes.

  7.  Place scones on a greased and floured baking sheet, brush the tops with an egg wash, and bake at 450 degrees F for 12-15 minutes or until risen and golden brown.

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[1] Because I totally have a readership beyond my mum. Happy belated Mother’s Day, Mum!

[2] Spoiler alert!

[3] If you ever, ever tell me that the chocolate-chip bullshit that Starbucks sells is a scone, I will personally come to your house and…I dunno, eat your favorite cereal? Yeah. I’ll eat your cereal. TAKE THAT! BAM!

[4] Please, don’t quote me. You’ll look stupid.

[5] And that is it. That is literally everything you need to do to make jam. You can do it with any berry, as well. Go crazy, y’all.

[6] Yes, over kneading will absolutely turn your scones into vulcanized rubber.

Melanie WangComment