A few weeks ago my friend J choose this recipe from Baked’s “New Frontiers in Baking” for me to bake, but because I was sure that maple extract could not be found in Berlin, I gave up on them immediately. But then just a week later my BFF Tracy from my time at Norwalk high school (a time when BFF might not have been used as an acronym yet), whom I hadn’t seen in 20 years found me on fb. Since she was going on a short holiday to Europe with her husband and daughter, she spontaneously decided to come to Berlin for a day. She asked me what she could bring from Florida and I asked for maple extract (among other things). It was an incredibly great day and I am immensely happy we have found each other again (even though I’m sorry I have to admit fb made it happen).
maple walnut scones
- 4 cups flour
- ½ cup caster sugar
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 1½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1½ cups (340g) butter, cubed and cold
- 1 egg
- ¾ cup buttermilk
- 2 teaspoon maple extract
- 1 cup toasted walnuts, chopped
- ½ cup icing sugar
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
- Add the butter. Use your fingertips to rub the butter into the flour until you get little cornflake – sized pieces.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg, the buttermilk and the maple extract, then pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and gently knead the dough.
- Add the walnuts to the dough and knead gently.
- Move the dough to a lightly floured surface and use your hands to shape the dough into two discs.
- Preheat the oven to 350° F / 176°C and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Cut each disk into 6 wedges with a knife and brush each scone with buttermilk and sprinkle with raw sugar.
- Bake for about 25 to 30 minutes (rotating the baking sheet halfway through the baking time) or until the scones are golden brown.
- Transfer the scones to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- Add icing.
Sorry, this picture turned out blurry…
So this is the fourth scone recipe I’m trying while on my perfect (and easy) scone recipe quest. I adapted it from Beth Eaglescliffe home baking recipes and I think they’re quite good, in fact they are currently holding second place.
When I went through the many scone recipes online, I repeatedly encountered the “self-raising” flour problem. I’ve never seen self-raising flour in stores here and for the ultimate scones recipe that I posted in June I just winged it, but this time I thought I should do some research. Check the tips page on how to make self-raising flour.
This is how I winged it before: 3 teaspoons baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon salt for 1 3/4 cup (225g) flour
For this recipe I used the Bread, Cakes and Ale conversion and added 25g of baking powder to 475g of plain flour.
traditional english scones
- 4 cups (500 g) self-raising flour - I used 3 cups & 12 tablespoons (475g) all purpose flour and 2 tablespoons & ½ teaspoon (25g) baking powder
- 4½ tablespoons (55g) caster sugar
- pinch of salt
- 7 tablespoons (100g) butter
- 11 oz (300ml) milk
- Preheat oven to 425°F / 220°C
- Lightly grease a baking sheet and dust with a little flour.
- Place the flour, salt, sugar and baking powder in a large bowl.
- Add the butter in small pieces and rub the butter into the flour so you get little cornflake – sized pieces.
- Make a well in the middle of the mixture and gradually add the milk, then fold the milk into the dry mixture gently with a wooden spoon, try not to beat the air out of the dough.
- Place the dough onto the floured work surface and shape it by patting it gently into a one inch thick sheet.
- Using a 2 inch / 5cm diameter cookie cutter cut out scone from your dough sheet.
- Beat the egg with a splash of milk.
- Put the scones on the greased baking sheet and brush each one with the egg glaze, then bake for 10 minutes.
- Check them after 10 minutes to see if they have risen and are golden on top, if not, leave to bake for 2 or 4 more minutes.
- Place the scones in a towel on a wire rack to cool.
A few weeks ago I asked my friend J to pick the next scone recipe and she chose Baked’s maple walnut scones. That recipe unfortunately requires maple extract, another ingredient that is probably impossible to find in Germany (I didn’t even bother looking, since vanilla extract disappeared from our shelves recently), so I gave up and chose this recipe: Jamie Oliver’s crumbliest scones. I adapted it just slightly and I think they turned out quite great, for now the hold the first place in my scone quest!
These scones are made with milk and eggs, while the cream scones are made with heavy cream and the ultimate scones are made with buttermilk.
- 11 tablespoons (150g) cold butter
- 4 cups (500g) self-raising flour (I used regular flour + 4 ½ teaspoons baking powder)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3 heaped teaspoons golden caster sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs (L)
- 5 tablespoons milk
- Put the butter, flour, baking powder, sugar and salt into a bowl and rub the butter into the flour so you get little cornflake – sized pieces.
- Make a well in the middle of the dough, add the eggs and milk, and stir it with a spatula.
- Move the dough around as little as possible.
- Sprinkle with flour, cover the bowl with cling film and put it in the fridge for 15 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 400° F / 200° C.
- Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface until it's about 1 inch / 2 - 3cm thick.
- With a 2½ inch / 6cm round cutter or the rim of a glass, cut out circles from the dough and place them on a baking sheet.
- Bake in the oven for 12 to 15 minutes, or until risen and golden.
I don’t have a regular round cookie cutter (maybe I’ll go out and buy one now before I forget again) so I used a slightly serrated cookie cutter, which gave these scones a funny shape, but these scones are really great, not too sweet, so clotted cream and jam go extremely well with them!
This is my second scone test for my upcoming holiday and it is adapted from Cynthia Barcomi‘s first book. A long time ago when I didn’t live in Berlin and would come here at least once a year for the Berlin Film Festival, I would always stop by Barcomi’s coffee shop to buy cookies, muffins and bagels to take back home (then Dortmund). It was the only place I knew of where this kind of baked goods were sold at that time. This was many, many, many years ago (I feel old) and Barcomi’s has since expanded, Cynthia Barcomi has published a number of cookbooks and cookies, muffins and bagels are sold in many other places now too. Her classic cream scone recipe calls for chocolate and currants. I don’t really care for currants, so I left those out. And because I wanted to see how the scones taste without the chocolate I divided the dough and added less chocolate (1,8 ounces / 50g) to half of the dough.
I used my hands to mix the ingredients instead of my 25-year-old hand mixer because I might be making these scones in a holiday home without appliances, but I felt like my hands were trapped in quicksand. I managed to untangle my fingers from the dough after a while, but I think the next time I’ll try mixing the dough at least with a spoon or a fork first.
After I divided the dough I formed two circles (one with and one without chocolate) and cut each into 4 pieces instead of the 8 mentioned in the recipe. The scones should bake for 18 to 20 minutes until they are lightly golden, but both the plain and the chocolate scones didn’t turn golden after 22 minutes, so I took them out nonetheless – my oven is a little bit whacky – and they were definitely done. Both varieties tasted great and kept for another day without turning dry.
- 2 ¾ cups (350g) all-purpose flour
- ¼ to ½ cup (50g bis 80g) of sugar
- 2 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons (90g) cold butter
- 5 ½ ounces (160ml) heavy cream
- 1 egg (M)
- chocolate (3,5 ounces / 100g) and currants (½ cup / 75g)
- Preheat the oven to 375° F / 220° C. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Lightly whisk the cream and the egg in a bowl.
- Throw all the dry ingredients into another bowl. Add the butter and rub together with your fingers to make a reasonably crumbed mixture.
- Add the egg&cream mixture and work the dough until everything is mixed, don’t overmix.
- Lift the ball of soft dough out of the bowl and place it on a floured surface. Knead the mixture just a little. Pat the dough gently with your hands and form a circle to a thickness of approx. 2,5 cm (slightly under 1 inch) and cut it into 8 pie triangles.
- Bake for 18-20 minutes.
This is my favourite scone recipe so far. Let’s see how the next scone recipe holds up…
Last year I spent a two week holiday in Gozo&Malta with a friend and when we went grocery shopping the first day and found clotted cream we went nuts. We ate clotted cream every day, mostly on croissants and cookies. It’s not impossible to buy clotted cream in Berlin, but it’s absurdly expensive, so I’ve never bought it before. Because we enjoyed our holiday so much we are going right back this year and I think it would be a great idea if I could bake scones to go with that clotted cream. So now I’m on a quest to find an easy recipe that can be made within the confines of a holiday home that is not equipped with any baking utensils.
The first recipe I tried is adapted from BBC Good Food aptly named ultimate scones. Since I didn’t have slightly salted butter (just strongly salted) I used regular butter and added a little bit of salt and instead of the self-raising flour I used all-purpose flour the original recipe calls for and added baking powder and baking soda.
- 1¾ cup (225g) flour
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup (50g) butter, chilled, cut in small pieces
- 2 tablespoons (25g) caster sugar
- ½ cup (125ml) buttermilk
- 4 tablespoons full-fat milk
- extra flour for dusting
- Preheat the oven to 430° F / 220° C. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Tip the flour into a bowl with the salt. Add the butter and rub together with your fingers to make a reasonably crumbed mixture. Stir in the sugar.
- Add the milk to the buttermilk and pour it into the mixture. Gently work the dough until it forms a soft, almost sticky, dough. Don’t overwork at this point or you will toughen the dough.
- Lift the ball of soft dough out of the bowl and put it on to a floured surface. Knead the mixture just a little. Pat the dough gently with your hands to a thickness of approx. 2,5 cm (slightly under 1 inch) and cut it into triangles.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes.
Fresh out of the oven the scones were great by themselves, but the next day they were already too dry and were in dire need of that clotted cream. In any case, this is already a great recipe for that holiday clotted cream situation.