Updated: May 16, 2020
Classic Irish scones. Easy recipe - only 6 ingredients.
We are saying NO to gooey and underbaked, floury scones!
This recipe produces scones which are airy and delicious. Scones have thin, slightly crisp skin on the outside and are baked at high temperature to make sure centre is fluffy and only a little bit gooey.
These scones are a little treat - place a teaspoon of sour cream (or whipped cream, clotted cream) and your favourite jam on top (or first?! :) and enjoy!
For a good bake:
Use cold sour cream and unsalted butter - straight from the fridge.
Don’t substitute sour cream - usually we are flexible but in this recipe, if you want proper texture and firm scones - go with sour cream! Use unsalted butter too (water content is different vs. salted - unsalted will shape up your scones better).
Minimise mixing and kneading - 1 minute and you are done. The dough comes together quickly and there is no ambiguity whether you should add a bit more flour or a bit more sour cream - ratios are on point.
Roll out and fold the dough as in the recipe. Dust work surface with flour (less is more but don’t allow the dough to stick to the surface; 2 tsps flour is all you need - for surface and rolling pin). Shape the dough as in the recipe - roll out first and then fold in 3 (as if you were folding a business letter), let those layers gently flap on one another - press, but only gently. Scone cutter (or glass with sharp edge) will seal the shape.
Cutting scones - we use scone cutters for these or glass with sharp edges. Press firm using cold scone cutter, lift it up (don’t twist). To keep texture intact, you may opt to lift scones from the surface using knife (gently lift the bottom of the scone using thin knife).
Chill shaped scones in the fridge for 1 hour before baking. Brush with egg wash just before placing on hot tray.
Preheat oven to 220C (200C fan forced) with cast iron skillet or tray in it - give your oven 30 minutes to heat up the tray well. You will be placing scones on hot tray/skillet (the bottom will get the heat from the get-to).
The beauty of this simple recipe is that you can use scraps of the dough for soft pie base! One mess - few bakes. I usually bake 3 scones (clean-cut, no reshaping) from this recipe and use scraps for pies. I will post a simple Apple Sharlotka with Meringue so that you can use it in that bake (or in whatever fruity pies you are baking). You may also opt to re-shape the dough and cut 1 more scone.
Irish Scones Recipe
Yield: 3 scones + pie base (or 4 scones, 1 re-shaped)
Tin: large baking tray or cast iron skillet
Time: 20min prep + 1hr chilling + 12-14min baking
225g self-raising flour
1/4 tsp coarse sea salt
40g caster sugar (or 20g caster sugar + 20g vanilla sugar)
30g unsalted butter, straight from the fridge
150g sour cream, straight from the fridge
1 large egg mixed with 2 tsps sour cream
Prepare the dough: Sift flour into a bowl, mix in salt and sugar. Grate cold butter into flour (or cut butter into small pieces). Using finger tips and palms of your hands, swiftly work in butter into flour. Add sour cream and mix until loose dough forms, then knead for 15 seconds to bring the dough together. Lightly dust work surface and rolling pin. Pressing gently, roll out the dough (1-cm thick circle - you may opt to rotate the dough 60 degrees, every so often, so that it’s easier to shape). Fold the circle into 3 (same way you would fold a business letter). Press gently and cut out scones.
Chill scones in the fridge for 1hr before baking.
Preheat the oven to 220C (200C fan forced) 30 minutes before baking, with the skillet/tray/pizza stone in. When ready to bake - apply egg wash on top of the scones and place your scones onto hot skillet (tray).
Bake at 220C (200C fan forced) for 12-14 minutes. If you are using fan forced oven - rotate the skillet half-way through the baking. Scones are most enjoyable on the day they are baked. Enjoy!