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What's up with my scones

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Showing 1-25 of 55 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 25 May 2012 02:14:05 BDT
susannah says:
can anyone help me. Whatever I do and even though I follow the recipe to the letter my scones always turn out like biscuits. What am I doing wrong? Please help me and save my sanity and my marriage!

Posted on 25 May 2012 04:34:30 BDT
Darren says:
Are you rolling them too thin, or are you over-working the dough when you roll them out. Also, when you cut them out don't twist the cutter as you are pushing down and pulling up.

Posted on 25 May 2012 08:35:29 BDT
Darts Fan says:
Overmixing probably

Posted on 25 May 2012 10:31:09 BDT
It would be helpful if you posted the recipe you are using.

Posted on 25 May 2012 10:56:20 BDT
Last edited by the author on 25 May 2012 10:56:51 BDT
E. Arthur says:
You have to preheat the trays you are baking them on. My teacher at school told me this is what makes them come apart in the middle like a good scone should.

Posted on 25 May 2012 14:10:52 BDT
Last edited by the author on 25 May 2012 14:12:48 BDT
Jogi says:
dont over work the flour. have it only just combined. preheat oven and place a few icecubes in the bottom of the oven when you put scones in to cook. dont roll pastry too thin as first response suggests

Oh yeah... makes sure your baking powder isnt best before 1996.

fresh is best.

In reply to an earlier post on 25 May 2012 14:57:10 BDT
Susannah. Keep as wet as possible without being too sticky to handle, handle as little as possible,pre- heat the oven even a fan oven, my friend does not roll hers out either, she makes a sausage shape,and then cuts thick slices off that. If you cut thin, you get thin with scones I,m afraid. If you prefer, flatten the dough gently with your hands instead of rolling out,flour the cutter so it doesn,t stick,or cut into wedges like you would a cake. If you roll them out first then use a cutter you either waste dough, or, when you reshape dough,roll out then cut out you are over handling and your scones will be tough. See where I,m coming from. Bet you wished you had,nt asked. Xxcarolexx

In reply to an earlier post on 25 May 2012 15:25:20 BDT
susannah says:
I'm using 280 gm sr flour, pinch of salt,1tbs sugar, 20gm butter chopped, 1 egg, 185 ml milk,extra milk for glazing gas mark 7 15-20 mins. If making fruit scones add 125gm sultanas

In reply to an earlier post on 25 May 2012 15:28:14 BDT
susannah says:
280 gms sr flour, pinch salt, 1tbs sugar, 20g chopped butter, 1 egg, 185 ml milk, 125 gms sultanas

In reply to an earlier post on 25 May 2012 15:37:47 BDT
Last edited by the author on 25 May 2012 15:38:05 BDT
Hi Susannah,
The butter seems a bit light to me, for 280g SR flour I'd be using about 55g butter. Try increasing the fat on your next batch and also follow all the very good mixing tips posted above, especially about not overmixing.
Good luck!

Posted on 25 May 2012 17:52:57 BDT
Last edited by the author on 25 May 2012 20:54:59 BDT
Hi susannah,
Yes, a scone mix is virtually a biscuit mix - so it's what you do with it that counts! (as the actress said to the bishop!)

Definitely, DON'T knead it like bread dough.
In fact, handle the dough as little as possible. This is so important if you don't want tough, dry scones. The whole idea is to leave small pieces of the cold butter suspended in the dough. You should get a tender texture on the inside (also the secret to all good marriages!) and a little crunch on the outside.

If you knead the dough, all the kneading action and the warmth of your hands will just melt all the cold little butter pieces, and increase your chances of them baking like biscuits. Also the more you knead, the more sticky it will become, and so you will start using more and more flour to roll out - which will also make dry, hard biscuits.

Keep at it susannah, we believe in you! - and if all this still fails to produce light, fluffy scones, then just put on a big, bright smile - and tell your husband that it's a new recipe for extra large biscotti - LOL ;o>

Posted on 26 May 2012 06:45:10 BDT
pete gumm says:
i always put buttermilk in mine, the same as when i make muffins x

Posted on 26 May 2012 13:18:16 BDT
Last edited by the author on 26 May 2012 19:05:50 BDT
Hey Pete, me too - or yoghurt - 'tis me oirish roots showing!
I never use cutters on them either. I usually shape the dough into a round and cut into wedges.

I never rely on self-raising flour alone, I also add bicarb of soda to create a lighter, fluffier texture.
The raising agent is clearly important here too, but many cookbooks are divided over which gives the best results. I've always used bicarb of soda, but I've found recipes calling for baking powder, self-raising flour, cream of tartar - and many for combinations of all of them!

Bicarb of soda reacts with acids (such as buttermilk) as does cream of tartar, or even lemon juice can be used to create the carbon dioxide that causes the scone mixture to rise. Baking powder is simply a mix of bicarb and cream of tartar, and self-raising flour has already has a little baking powder added to it. So, in theory, all three should give similar results when used.

Hmmm, so perhaps that's it as well susannah. Try boosting your usual self-raising flour with some extra bicarb of soda, or more baking powder!

My friend's mum passed this on to me, The National Trust recipe for scones - Makes 12
350g sifted self-raising flour, 50g softened butter + 50g softened lard, 100 - 115 milk, a touch of sugar.

Preheat oven to 190C. Grease two baking trays. Rub both fats into flour, working quickly and lightly as possible with cold hands. Add enough milk to give soft, bread-like dough. On a floured board, roll out to a thickness of 1.5cm and cut into rounds with 6cm cutter. Place on prepared trays. Bake for 15-20 mins until lightly golden and well risen. Remove from oven and on to a wire rack to cool.

I haven't tried it at home yet but they taste seriously good in their cafes - my friend's mum swears by the lard as the secret ingredient!

The great thing about all of these recipes is that they are all reasonably quick, easy to follow and cheap to make - so just keep experimenting - say a different recipe a month till you find one that works best for you! x

Posted on 27 May 2012 18:35:47 BDT
pixie says:
If you are brushing the tops of scones try not to have the egg/milk trickle down the sides, it stops them rising, If you want the best recipe, Mary Berry. also made them with lemonade.

Posted on 28 May 2012 11:50:22 BDT
Last edited by the author on 28 May 2012 11:51:18 BDT
Janet brown says:
my mother always made her scones when the milk had gone sour absolutely delicious would not make them with fresh milk, also do not overwork or over roll the mix handle with care !!!!

In reply to an earlier post on 28 May 2012 12:27:20 BDT
Do not use "sour milk" which has soured at home. If the milk has been pasteurised, as most of it is these days, it will be "rotten" milk rather than the old-fashioned sour milk. To replicate sour milk from the old days either buy cultured buttermilk or squeeze some lemon juice into fresh milk and let it sit for a few minutes. In the old fashioned sour milk it is the lactic acid produced in souring that works with the baking soda to raise the scones. Cultured buttermilk contains this and the lemon juice is a suitable acid alternative. Live yogurt also works well.

Posted on 28 May 2012 12:49:26 BDT
Bookish says:
I've never made scones with an egg - just flour, baking powder, butter, milk. Have the butter really cold, chop it into the flour with a knife then rub in using just the fingertips, to keep the mix as cool as poss. Mix the milk in with a knife also, shape and cut on floured board, again keeping hand contact to minimum. Buttermilk is good. Yum scones. I might just go and make some! Cheese is lovely, add grated cheese to the flour mix before adding milk. Oh yum.

In reply to an earlier post on 28 May 2012 13:04:35 BDT
Last edited by the author on 28 May 2012 13:05:16 BDT
Cheese scones! Yum, yum! Even though it is so hot today, I now have a craving for cheese scones this afternoon with my tea. Too hot to put the big oven on so I'll just make a couple in the Remoska. (And I not only add grated strong cheddar to the flour mix, I also keep a little back and drop it on top of the scones about five minutes before they're ready.) Yum, yum! I don't know if I can wait until tea time.

Posted on 28 May 2012 13:30:02 BDT
Last edited by the author on 28 May 2012 13:31:00 BDT
I like a pinch of Colman's Mustard Powder and some black pepper in my cheese scones.
And, if I am really pushing the boat out, I'll add some snipped up pieces of just-cooked smoked bacon.

Billy, I totally agree on the buttermilk, and the milk and lemon - did you know if you haven't got the lemon you can use vinegar instead? I've never tried it myself but I've seen it mentioned in recipes.

Can't say I'm very keen on the idea of that myself! x

In reply to an earlier post on 28 May 2012 13:43:16 BDT
Oh yes, suzysunshine7, Colmans mustard powder is another vital ingredient in cheese scones and also any other cheesy dishes like macaroni cheese or cauliflower cheese. A pinch of cayenne pepper is also another "secret" ingredient.
The vinegar works fine as the actual vinegar taste is baked out.
Re buttermilk - though it is normally quite expensive (St. Ivel about 50p for a small pot) our local Tesco now stocks quite a range of Polish groceries and chilled goods and has Lowicz buttermilk at only £1.00 per litre, about half the price of the others. I also enjoy it as a refreshing drink, half a glass of chilled buttermilk topped up with semi-skimmed milk. Luvly jubbly! That's this afternoon's tea sorted: cheese scones with a glass of buttermilk.

Posted on 28 May 2012 14:04:24 BDT
Last edited by the author on 28 May 2012 14:05:32 BDT
Yummy! we'll all grab our sunhats and shades - and be round at yours about 3.30pm?
I will give the vinegar a go then - it is always more available in our house than a lemon!
My neighbour keeps bobbing round and pinching them for her gin and tonics!

Thanks for the heads up on buttermilk in the Polish Food Section. We use a lot in our old Irish family recipes and it would certainly come in handy when buying in bulk! It's amazing what you can find when rummaging through unusual and unfamiliar brands - I've found a fantastic coconut milk that way, perfect for all my desserts and baking!

Posted on 28 May 2012 20:08:13 BDT
What number is the recipe is it 32?

Posted on 28 May 2012 20:37:22 BDT
classybird says:
I chuck in a dollop of natural yogurt with the milk instead of buttermilk - can't tell you exactly how much, I'm afraid, just some with enough milk to make a soft dough. And def with the light touch and not a lot of rolling - tend to pat it out with my hand, saves on washing up! Have to make a lot of scones to use up the jam mountain/river/lava flow from last year (had a variety of consistencies)

Posted on 28 May 2012 21:05:36 BDT
Hmmm, chewy to gooey I'm guessing?

Posted on 28 May 2012 21:19:09 BDT
classybird says:
Defo, Suzy but thankfully more gooey than chewy - excellent batch of marmalade this year and last year's morello jam makes a fab sauce but seems to have an aversion to staying on bread but an attraction to my clothes! Anyone else do the preserving thang?
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Initial post:  25 May 2012
Latest post:  22 May 2013

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