Yesterday I had some friends round for afternoon tea. Chocolate tartlets, coconut macaroons, jam tarts, tarte au citron, Victoria sandwich, currant scones and chocolate clusters all magicked up in the morning. While cakes and sweet treats are all well and good, I think it is essential to have some savoury items as well. Otherwise, well, all that sugar gets too much!
I made a selection of the famous cucumber sandwiches, but I also wanted to try my hand at something more substantial. The result was these scones – flavoured with strong cheddar, fresh chives and herbes de Provence, as well as a dash of nutmeg and mustard to complement the cheese.
These scones are soft and fluffy, and perfect while still warm – split them, and all the cheese is still melted and delicious! They are also an absolute, utter breeze to make. All you have to do is rub some butter into the flour, stir in the cheese and spices, then all some milk, which really makes them ideal if you’ve got unexpected guests or you need something a little special for breakfast. Ten minutes to make, fifteen minutes to bake and a few seconds to devour!
To make cheese and herb scones (makes 8):
• 225g plain flour
• 2 teaspoons baking powder
• 50g butter
• 75g strong cheddar
• 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
• 1 teaspoon dried herbs
• pinch of nutmeg
• 1/4 teaspoon mustard
• 150ml milk
1. Preheat the oven to 220°C (420°F).
2. Put the flour, baking powder and butter into a large bowl. Work with your fingers until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs and there are no lumps of butter. Add the grated cheddar, chives, herbs and nutmeg. Mix well with your hands.
3. In a bowl, mix the milk and mustard. Add to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined – the mixture should hold its shape but still be fairly wet.
4. Put lots of flour onto a kitchen worktop. Turn out the dough and roll lightly. Use a cutter to shape the scones – aim to get eight from the dough.
5. Bake for around 15 minutes until the scones are puffed and golden. Serve while still warm, and best eaten the same day.
Worth making? These scones are amazingly easy to make and taste spectacular. Highly recommended!