January 2012 Daring Bakers – Scone (Biscuits)

Hot scones and clotted cream, or jam and butter. What’s not to love?

When Audex from Audex Artifex first posted the scone challenge, my first thought was ‘Yea! This should be simple enough.’

I should have know better.

I pulled this out from my baking folder, dated back in 2008. It’s how one of my first few scones looked like. Hockey anyone?

Since then I’ve made scones a few times, but they never did rise very high. I made mistakes, not kneading the dough enough, not using fresh baking powder, twisting the cutter as I stamped out the scone rounds… All the no-nos to scones!

Basic scones from Audex

As you can see, my first try on this challenge didn’t turn out very well either. I’m thinking it was because of the baking powder, and my fear of overkneading the dough (I under kneaded it again!). It was still yummy… but I wanted higher scones! Next up, I tried the cream scones…

Cream biscuits
Looking better, yes? ;)

Cream biscuit with butterCream scone/biscuit with butter

I had a little problem with this batch as it browned very quickly on the top. Not sure if it’s because of the cream brushed on top… I pulled this out of the oven after 8 minutes and found that it was a little underbaked – I could taste the baking powder! My scones were bigger as I made only 5 scones per batch (instead of 6), I guess that’s why it needed in to be in the oven for the full 10 minutes as specified in the recipe. I simply popped it into the oven toaster for a while and it was fine :D

Next up… Buttermilk!

Buttermilk biscuits Buttermilk scones / biscuits!

Buttermilk biscuit with blackcurrant jam!
Yummy with blackcurrant jam.

I’m happy with this batch. Maybe I’m biased towards buttermilk :p These were flaky outside and fluffy within just out of the oven. Would have love to try out more variations as given in the challenge, but I’m already a day late posting this! But I’ll be trying out more scones, especially savory ones (to go with soup) anow that this has help me better understand the makings of a scone ;)

If I were to summarise what I’ve learnt on making a good scone, it would be –

1. use fresh baking powder

2. use the coldest butter, as you don’t want it to melt while rubbing it into the flour (Audex suggest to freeze it, but I just used it straight from the fridge and it works for me!)

3. after mixing up the dough, knead it several times until the dough is smooth. As it’s warm here in Singapore, what I did was to knead a few times, then placed the dough into the fridge. After about 20 minutes, I remove it from the fridge, and knead it a few more times before patting out to be stamped / sliced.

4. when cutting / stamping out your scone, use a floured cutter / knife, and do it a clean cut downwards. Do not twist the cutter, as that will seal the sides of the scone and prevent it from rising properly!

If you want more detailed tips on how to make great scones, head over to Audex’s post about scones… to prepare the challenge, he has done much research and shared it with everyone :) The recipes are over there too!

Thank you Audex again for this lovely challenge!


2 thoughts on “January 2012 Daring Bakers – Scone (Biscuits)

    • Thanks Alexandra!

      Daring bakers is part of the daring kitchen. It’s a group where there are monthly baking challenges for you to bake and post by the 27 of each month :) It’s fun as you get to try new recipes and learn more about baking!

      You have to sign up as a member to view the monthly challenges at the forum. Just pop over, sign up and join in the fun! :)

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