Where I grew up on the East coast of Canada scones were called biscuits. This is a Cape Breton recipe I have been whipping up ever since I started dabbling with baking around the age 12. Now, in Scotland, I've taught my daughter, aged 5, how to make them and she certainly has the magic touch with her small hands. Her scones turn out light, fluffy and deliciously perfect every time. They are quick and easy to make taking only 5 minutes to prepare and 9 minutes to cook. A wonderful addition to any soup especially served warm, Cape Breton style, with lashings of sticky black strap molasses and a thick slice of sharp cheddar cheese. They are also excellent as a snack the next day, cold, with DIY butter; true comfort food.
2 cups plain flour
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
4 tbsp butter
3/4 cup milk
Rub the first four ingredients together until the mixture resembles bread crumbs. Add the milk and stir until a dough forms. Be careful not to overmix or knead the dough too much. Cut with a 3" fluted round cutter (this is my tradition!). Gather up all the leftovers bits and re-roll until all the dough is used. The last scone will use up the remainders and is always oddly mishapen. It's tradition in our house that the youngest (present) gets this scone. Bake at 200 C for 9 minutes, or until golden. Serve warm.
Fruit scone - add a small handul of raisins before adding the milk.
Sweet scone - add 1 tbsp of caster sugar to the flour. This makes an excellent strawberry shortcake base and is also very, very lovely served with clotted cream and strawberry preserve.
Cheese scone - sprinkle the tops with grated mature cheddar prior to baking.
I am submitting this recipe/blog repost as my entry for the Tea Time Treats Challenge: Scones - Sweet & Savoury in March 2012, a blogger's challenge alternately hosted by Karen at Lavender and Lovage. and What Kate Baked.