It’s that time of year again folks…the new series of The Great British Bake off starts tomorrow night on BBC2, 8pm…and I can’t wait! I know a lot of people who love the show as much as I do and will be sharing my excitement!
To celebrate this occasion, I decided to make Paul Hollywood’s scone recipe. I’ve wanted to try this particular recipe for a while now. I don’t make scones very often because they are usually a bit of a hit or a miss for me. I always longed to make big, so fluffy I’m gonna die scones but mine can turn out a bit…flat.
So I was well chuffed with these beauties! They rose so high and were really light and fluffy. According to Mr Hollywood, the secret is in “chafing” the dough, which involves lightly folding the dough in half, turning it 90 degrees and repeating a few times until the dough is smooth. The recipe uses bread flour which I’ve never seen in a scone recipe before but it really works. I also figured out where else I was going wrong in my scone making – my dough wasn’t wet enough – it was too dry. It should have quite a sticky, wet consistency.
The method below does seem a bit long and complicated for such a simple bake, but once you’ve practised a couple of times, it will become easy peasy.
The best scone recipe
Makes 8 large or 15 small scones
500g strong white flour, plus a little extra for rolling out
80g soft butter, plus a little extra for greasing the tray
80g caster sugar
2 large eggs
5 tsp baking powder (Yes really 5 teaspoons – this is not a misprint!)
I egg beaten with a little salt, for glazing
Preheat the oven to 220C.Lightly grease a baking tray with butter and line with baking paper.Place 450g of the flour into a large bowl and add the butter. Rub the butter into the flour until you have a breadcrumb like mixture.Add the sugar, eggs and baking powder use a wooden spoon to turn the mixture gently. Add half the milk and stir gently with a spoon to combine. Then add the rest of milk a little at a time until you have a very soft, wet dough. You may not need to add all of the milk. Flour a work surface (using the remaining four but keep a little back) and tip the dough out. Sprinkle with the remaining flour. The mixture will be wet and sticky.
Using your hands, fold the dough in half, then turn the dough 90 degrees and repeat. This method is called “chaffing”. Repeat a few times until the dough is smooth. Take care not to overwork the dough. Next roll the dough out. Sprinkle more flour on the work surface and on top of the dough, then use the rolling pin to roll up from the middle and down from the middle. Turn the dough by 90 degrees and continue to roll until it’s roughly 2.5cm thick. “Relax” the dough by lifting the edges and dropping the dough back down on the work surface.
Using a cutter dipped in flour, stamp out rounds from the dough and place on the baking tray. Don’t twist the cutter when pressing down, it could make the scones uneven. Leftover dough can be re-worked and re-rolled, but the resulting scones won’t turn out quite as fluffy.
Place the scones on the tray and leave to rest for a few minutes. Glaze the scones with the beaten egg, trying not to let the mixture run down the sides.
Bake for about 15 minutes, or until well risen and golden.