Nancy Birtwhistle's Lemon and Caraway Scones

A well-made scone is light, springy and delicious.  They are best served fresh and eaten the same day.  The recipe below, therefore, is for just six scones – you need to eat them all in one sitting.

This recipe is low in fat and sugar so don’t be afraid to apply plenty of Rodda’s clotted cream and Tiptree jam!

I always make scones by hand and the secret of success with scone baking is to not have the mix too dry, try not to over handle plus you need a very hot oven.

These scones are sublime – flavoured conservatively with lemon and caraway seed.  My inspiration for this recipe came from the lemon and caraway seed cake my grandmother used to make.

Ingredients: 225g Self raising flour
45g salted butter
35g caster sugar
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
130ml whole milk
1 tsp caraway seeds
½ tsp vanilla extract

Time: 20 minutes

Makes: 6

Method:

Firstly, in a dry frying pan toast the seeds gently for a minute or two just to extract the nutty flavour contained within.  Don’t burn them or they will be bitter.

In a medium mixing bowl grate the zest from the lemon.  Place the milk in a small jug or glass then squeeze the lemon juice into it (the lemon should yield about 20ml) and set aside to thicken and curdle.

Place the self-raising flour into the bowl containing the zest then add the softened butter and using your fingertips rub the mix together until it resembles breadcrumbs.  Stir in the sugar and toasted seeds.

Add the vanilla extract to the milk mixture then add sufficient to bind the dough together.  I use a knife initially then my hands.  The dough needs to be just sticky, not too wet that you can't handle it and not too dry.

Turn out onto a lightly floured worktop then smooth out using a rolling pin or simply the palm of your hand.   The dough needs to be quite thick – about 1.5cm.  Using a 7cm cutter dipped in flour to prevent the dough sticking, cut out six scones.  You will need to reuse the trimmings.

Place your scones on a baking sheet lined with non-stick parchment then pop them into the fridge.

Heat your oven to 225 degrees c and when your oven has reached its temperature take your scones from the fridge and if you have any milk mix left, give them a little brush just on the tops.  Avoid letting any run down the sides as this will impede the rising.

Pop straight into the hot oven and bake for 10-12 minutes until well risen and golden.  Do not overbake – the base of your scone should be golden brown not dark brown or black!

Cool on wire trays and serve the same day.

sharing the love of cream teas together