My Favorite Plain Scones + Video
Before I say anything about these amazing plain scones, watch my video on how to make the recipe:
Or, watch it on youtube.
Okay, now we can talk.
The first time I ever made scones was this past year. Scones were a baked good I was completely unfamiliar with, and hence, quite intimidated by. So it goes.
But then I tried out a scone recipe. And realized I had been terribly mistaken all along. Scones were not intimidating at all, I discovered. They're really so simple to make, actually! And fun too, because you have to really get in there and use your hands to crumble things and that gives you an excuse to be gross and unhygienic and stuff. The video above is all the proof you need.
If you've never made scones, I don't want you to be frightened by these harmless, buttery biscuits like I was. Which is the reason I chose to make a video for this post. By visually depicting the process, the idea of attempting to make a batch of scones becomes a lot less scary. Promise.
Making scones is just like making a pie dough. Some pie doughs use a slightly different technique though. For some pies, you crumble the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles cornmeal. For scones, you always crumble the butter until it becomes pea-sized, and you stop before the mixture turns yellow. Yellow = over-mixed. Over-mixed = scones that are not as flaky and tender as you want them to be.
I found this recipe on the Martha Stewart website, tried it out, tasted it, and loved it right away. So these are my favorite plain scones. Until I find a recipe I like better. But maybe I never will.
These scones are simple to make, have the perfect amount of sweetness (plain scones are meant to be eaten with butter, jam, or another sweet spread, so they shouldn't be anywhere near as sweet as a regular cookie), and can be customized any way you'd like.
You can even transform this recipe by adding savory ingredients (think cheese and fresh herbs) into the dough. I've done that before. I just cut down on the sugar a bit and added cheddar cheese, fresh dill, and fresh chives. Result: UH-MAZING!
My favorite plain scones
Adapted from Martha Stewart
Yield: About 16 scones
6 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 sticks butter, COLD and cubed
3 large eggs
1 3/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 475 F. Line 2 baking sheets.
Whisk together first four ingredients (dry) in large bowl. Add in the cubed butter and crumble it into the mixture with your hands until you get pea-sized crumbs. Do not over-mix! If mixture turns yellow, the butter was crumbled too finely.
Mix together the eggs, milk, and vanilla and add to dry ingredients. Knead the mixture a few times in the bowl and then turn out onto a floured surface and knead till just combined.
Roll out dough to 1-inch thickness with a rolling pin. Use a round cookie cutter to cut out the scones. Alternatively, roll dough into circle and cut out triangles with pizza cutter or knife. Re-roll out dough and cut out more scones until the dough is used up.
Brush the scones with milk and bake for 12-14 minutes.
On a completely unrelated note, yes, yes I have: