A First Attempt At Making Homemade Scones
Our friend Betsy is a dance movement therapist and is working with my daughter Maddie and me to stretch our muscles and strengthen our cores. For Maddie, it is to help her with cerebral palsy, for me it is to help me deal with the years.
Betsy's husband is an actor who is interested in learning how to cook so Betsy and I discuss cooking strategies all the time. Last week she encouraged Brad to prepare some homemade oatmeal scones and this is his story.
I am no master in the kitchen. I make some pretty mean scrambled eggs, but the butter and milk I add do most of the work for me, flavor-wise. The one strength I have that I use to my advantage is that I am pretty good at following directions, so long as I have a basic idea how it is supposed to look which is why I can’t understand how so many cookbooks don’t have pictures
As far as I’m concerned, it would be like asking someone that has never seen a platypus to draw one just based on descriptions. This is how I felt when I was recently tasked with baking some scones for our household. I have had a scone before; they look like dessert pizza slices.
The most challenging part of the process for me was "cutting the butter in" without a pastry blender. So I used a fork, which took a while and really hurt my hand. So I’m not making these again until I get the right tool.
The second part that was confusing to me was that it asked me to make a "well" in the center of the dry ingredients. A well what? After thinking about it for a minute, I decided they meant a well like you get water out of; only this time I was putting wet ingredients into it.
The recipe asked me to place the dough in an 8-inch circle. Should I be embarrassed that I used a piece of printer paper to measure out the 8-inches of diameter?
Then when it wanted me to use a knife dipped in flour to cut out 12 wedges, I opted for a pizza slicer instead and cut 8 scones out of the dough.
The scones, surprisingly, came out quite nice. And they tasted all the sweeter because I had made them.
Homemade Oatmeal Scones Recipe
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup granulated white sugar
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter cut into small pieces
- 1¼ cups old-fashioned oats
- 1 cup dried raisins or dried cranberries
- 1 large egg
- ⅓ cup milk
For the Topping
- 1 tablespoon milk
- 2 tablespoons granulated white sugar
- Preheat oven to 375° F, grease a baking sheet.
- In an ample bowel, mix flour, sugar, baking powder, cream of tartar and salt. With a pastry blender (Or fork if you want to feel pain) cut in the butter until the mixture looks like bread crumbs.
- Stir in oats and dried fruit.
- Make a well in center.
- In a small bowl or cup, mix egg and milk, and pour into the well you made in the dry ingredients. With a fork (which you happen to have nearby because you don’t have a pastry blender), stir wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, until everything is evenly moistened and comes together in a ball. But don’t over handle or it makes the scones tough. The dough should be soft and crumbly.
- Pat the dough out on a lightly floured board to form an 8-inch circle.
- Transfer to the greased baking sheet.
- Cut dough into 8 wedges with a lightly floured knife, or just use a pizza cutter.
Topping and Finish
- Brush wedges with the milk and then sprinkle with sugar. (I just realized I mixed the sugar and milk together and spread them on the wedges. It tasted fine that way.)
- Bake at 375° F for 22 to 25 minutes, until golden brown.