Truth time! I want to be a ‘Lil bit fancy!
I don’t know about y’all, but Lock-down isolation has me longing for those forbidden Devonshire Tea Scones, the Chantilly Cream and French Raspberry Jam-type High Teas. The bottomless tea cups of steamy amber delight. And, need I say it, Classic Perfect Scones.
I want Classic, buttery, warm and cozy scones with a ridiculously sized dollop of dangerously sweet, Raspberry Jam and a glowing halo of vanilla-kissed, freshly whipped cream on top!
That’s what we are having today, Devonshire Tea Scones. And we can, because we are adults and we pay taxes and we deserve a treat now and again! Well, that’s my excuse, what’s yours?
Well, if you don’t have one, I beg you to find one, because you need these in your life, so there! 😉
Anyway, we were being fancy, weren’t we?
So let’s begin!
So, join me in making a batch of old school scrumptiously fresh, Classic Devonshire Tea Scones. And, as an extra fancy gal, I’ll treat you to a complimentary Tarot reading with an old friend of mine while we do Devonshire Tea Scones, in our own homes, like a boss! 😉
Enjoy, my fancy ones!
Classic But Fancy Devonshire Scones
It makes sense to me that we begin our spirited baking journey together with this quintessential, teatime treat!
Today, I am gonna show you how to make these beauties yourself, and before you ask, yes, I am gonna teach you how to make Chantilly Cream here as well, because that completes the “Devonshire Tea Scone Experience” apart from the hot tea, which you can make yourself, to your sweet sugary & milky tastes (or without, as you see fit).
The #1 thing to remember about making scones is they are more like a pastry, than a cake, and so we a going to be making a dough, that needs to stay as cold as possible throughout the whole process, in order to avoid gluten formations in your dough. This creates tough dough and tough scones are no eating fun for anyone, so let’s keep our dough pieces colder than cold to avoid that whole nasty business!
The #2 thing to remember when it comes to scones is not to handle or overwork the dough too much, less is much more with this technique. The constant agitation and the warming/melting of the butter with the heat of your hands is gonna act like gluten’s BFF, and we don’t want that guest to our fancy, fancy party!
So think of your dough like a hot potato, and you have the right idea!
Just one more thing to mention, before we begin, is traditionally, the scones served during Devonshire Tea are presented plain without fruit and with clotted cream. In Australia, clotted cream is hard to come by, and so, it is usually served here in proper establishments with freshly whipped cream, and so, that’s why I have added Chantilly Cream as part of this Devonshire Tea Scone recipe, as it is what I have grown up with.
I have also included a Date variation within the recipe here, because some of you go gaga for Date Scones, and I didn’t want you missing out! (When I worked at a professional bakery, the Date Scones were the most popular, go figure!? I prefer mine plain jane, but numbers don’t lie, so yes, you can thank me with money, gifts, kittens or swedish massages…you’re welcome) 😉
Fancy Devonshire Scones
Ingredients and Equipment:
(Makes about 24 Scones)
- 600g Plain All-Purpose Flour
- 75g Caster/Superfine Sugar
- ¼ Teaspoon of Salt
- 5 Teaspoons Baking Powder
- 240g Unsalted Butter, cut into 1cm/½ inch cubes and chilled for at least 10 minutes
- 2 Free Range Eggs
- 120ml/½ cup Full Cream Milk
- 150ml/⅔ cup Whipping or Heavy Cream
- ½ cup of dried Dates, pitted, cut into quarters (optional, for a ½ batch of Date Scones!)
- A round Scone or Cookie Cutter in your preferred size
- 2 Baking Sheets, lined with baking/parchment paper
- A Whisk
- A Rolling Pin
- Two Mixing Bowls
- A Flour/Mesh Sifter
- A large pot of freshly, brewed Tea of your choice (to serve)
- Prepare and measure out all the ingredients, and be sure to sift all of the dry ingredients before assembly. Line the baking sheets with baking/parchment paper and set aside.
- Put the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder in one of your mixing bowls and stir with a wooden spoon until well combined. Add the prepared cold butter and rub between your fingertips until you reach a sand-like consistency. You may need to smoosh the butter into smaller pieces with your fingers to get the job done, that’s totally fine. Refrigerate for 10 minutes.
- Put the eggs, milk and cream in your last, clean mixing bowl and beat lightly with a whisk. Refrigerate for 10 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (365°F). Preheating is super important here!
- Fold the egg mixture into the sandy flour mixture with a large spoon until just combined and no bits of dryness remain. You may need to use your hands at the end of this step to fully combine your dough, just remember to do it as quickly as possible to avoid overworking your dough, or warming up your butter too much. You don’t want tough scones, now! The dough should be quite wet and, when pulled apart, break off in clumps and not stretch.
- If you are making half your batch as Date Scones, like I did, for a bit of variety, divide your ball of dough and quickly mix in your chopped dates into one of the dough balls with your hands, leaving the other aside. Be careful not to handle the dough too much as you add your dates. Refrigerate both bowls of dough for 10 minutes.
- Flour your work surface and rolling pin liberally. Flip one of your cold dough balls onto the surface (leaving the other still in the fridge). Liberally flour the top of the dough. With your rolling pin, roll the dough to about the height of the cookie cutter you’re using, or roughly about 1cm thick. Dip the cutter in flour and use to cut a round from the dough. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Continue cutting out rounds, then gather up the off-cuts and gently re-ball and re-roll to cut out more, but only re-roll once!
- Put the scones immediately into the preheated oven for 8 minutes if you have small, skinny scones, and 10 minutes if you have big, fat ones.
- After the time has elapsed, turn the oven down to 170°C (340°F) and let the scones bake for another 8–14 minutes. How do you know a scone is done? It has a lovely golden colour, will have risen quite a bit and will spring back when pressed lightly.
- Repeat steps 7-9 with your second ball of dough, as your first half-batch bakes!
- Serve warm with Chantilly Cream (recipe below) and Strawberry or Raspberry Jam on the day of baking. Oh, and don’t forget the freshly brewed pot of tea!
Whipped Chantilly Cream
Ingredients and Equipment:
- 240ml/1 cup cold, Whipping or Heavy Cream
- 2 Tablespoons of Confectioners’ Sugar/Icing Sugar, or Granulated Sugar
- ½ Teaspoon of pure Vanilla Extract
- A Hand-held or Stand Mixer with Whisk Attachment
- A metal Mixing Bowl
- Premium Jam (to serve)
1. To ensure the best texture and best results for your whipped cream, refrigerate your metal mixing bowl along with your whisk/or other attachment for at least 20 minutes before you begin.
2. Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla extract on medium-high speed until medium peaks* form, about 3-4 minutes. Be very careful to watch the cream as the texture comes together quickly and then it can be overdone in less than a minute! So don’t get distracted and if you are new to baking, stop and check as you go, that’s totally ok. If it’s developed a grainy feel, it’s overdone, and baby, you are gonna have to start again!
3. Use immediately or cover tightly with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. Freezing prepared whipped cream, can sometimes make it lose it’s creamy texture, but it’s definitely achievable. You can easily double up this recipe for a larger yield if you like, but for larger batches, stick to the Confectioners’/Icing Sugar instead of the Granulated Sugar, it will prevent a potential grainy mouthfeel.
*Medium peaks are between soft/loose peaks and stiff peaks, and a cute trick I learned from the women in my family, is to take a spoonful of the cream, turn it upside down, and if the peaks stay and don’t move, the whipped cream is done!
Weekly General Tarot Reading
What do we need to know right now, during the current social climate?
2. 6 of Earth (Pentacles)
3. 5 of Air (Swords)
Sooo, I promised you all a reading, did I not? This is a general 3-card reading, which I pulled to give us all some insight into the current global circumstances we all find ourselves in, and what we should do to proceed in these uncharted waters for the time being. Some of us are under higher restrictions than others, throughout the world, and even here in Australia, we are currently divided in different areas of harsher/lesser restrictions depending on where we live. But ‘The World’ card here, basically describes the fact of us all being interconnected in this experience and for most purposes, it is a positive card, but it is in the past position here, so I believe it reflects on how the world itself pulled together during the initial outbreak, and even though it was a scary and ‘brand new world’ we approached it together on a massive scale, and became more connected as a whole, even though it was an intense, sad and difficult time. This one is pretty self-explanatory, and The World card, is (I believe) a literal meaning here. The next card, is where it gets interesting..the 6 of Earth (Pentacles).
So, the 6 of Earth (Pentacles) talks about resources, your possessions, money, the things you possess in this world. It also speaks of the act of giving and receiving. At the moment, what we have is extremely important in these unstable times.. this card in the present may call on you to be more generous and charitable with your resources for those around you that may need help and are struggling during this time, is there something you can help them with? Does a family member or friend need help at this time? Perhaps you could organise a food parcel for an elderly neighbour or friend? Or offer a small loan to help a family member out if they have recently lost their job during this crisis? This card is advising us to do our bit and help out our communities, after all, they will remember the kind gesture and you will feel wonderful helping them out. It’s a win-win! But what if you are the individual needing assistance and require help? This card goes both ways, depending upon your current circumstances. If you are stricken with loss or are in desperate need of support, this card is advising you to ask and you shall receive. Accept or give with kindness and gratitude during this time and together we’ll push forward with brighter futures! Remember, “Teamwork makes the dream work!”
This last card, the 5 of Air (Swords) is a little more challenging in the future position. It warns of hollow victories, and unresolved arguments and bitter conflicts. I read this card as a gentle warning to us all, that everyone at the moment is doing their best under these strange times, and that a bit of Grace at this time will be the way forward. A lot of people will face injustices and rough circumstances as we all try to slowly repair our lives and return to perhaps a new way of living, or a sense of balance. Before that happens, tensions, drama, unrest and a lot of finger-pointing, are happening in the world right now.
This card advises that the best thing to do is stay out of the scene, focus on how you can minimise strife in your lives and if the negative situations or people can’t be resolved or reasoned with, the best thing to do is remove yourself from it. You might win the battle but the price you pay will be greater. Try to stay calm and neutral during this time, and try to focus on self-care and positivity, and try not to be bitter or resentful, even though I know times are hard and difficult. History has shown us that all things eventually DO change with time, and “This too Shall Pass” so let’s focus on being in an empowered and positive place, once the storm is over, so we rise again with grace, kindness and compassion. The world could always do with more of that, and that sounds to me, to be a much nicer place to be!
I hope this little reading helps you mindfully go about your week in positivity and peace! And, I hope you get to make some scrumptious Scones! Until next time,
In yummy crumbs and Brightest Blessings,