Cardamom and Orange Scones

You know I hadn’t tried scones before I moved to London? I didn’t even know what scones were.

I know, how sad is that?! I spent the first 23 years of my life without enjoying scones’ delightful crumbliness. Last week, we organized a small tea party and of course I had to make scones, and of course, I had to Moroccan-ize them.

I am not fond of chunky scones so I chose to add just enough ingredients to give them a light perfumed Moroccan-inspired aroma. Cardamom and orange zest were definitely a spotless addition!

 

Orange and cardamom scones

INGREDIENTS

Makes 6 medium scones

  • 225 gr self-raising flour, plus extra to dust
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • zest of 1 orange, about 1 tablespoon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom (or ¾ freshly ground cardamom)
  • 60 gr unsalted cold butter, cut in 1 cm cubes
  • 40 gr caster sugar
  • 150 ml milk
  • beaten egg for egg wash (optional)

METHOD

• Preheat oven to 200 C (390 F).

• Dust flour over a baking sheet and set aside.

• Transfer the flour, salt, cardamom, orange zest and butter in a large bowl.

• Using your finger tips, rub the flour into the butter until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs and we can’t feel the butter anymore. Make sure you use your fingertips and not your hand palms as this will warm up the butter and you need to keep it cold in order to obtain the right (crumbly) scone texture.

• Add the sugar, mix the ingredients and make a well in the centre of the dry mixture

.• Add the milk and simultaneously combine the dough using a cutlery knife until the dough comes together.

• Gather the dough with your hands and knead it for 30 to 60 seconds until it is soft and spongy. Don’t over knead it as this will make the scones tough. Add a couple of teaspoons of milk if the dough is too dry.

• Place the dough on a floured surface and roll out to 2 cm thickness.

• Dip a 6 cm pastry cutter to cut out the scones. At this stage, you might have to press the remains of the dough back together in order to cut out another scone. If desired, brush the scones with a beaten egg to make them glossy.

• Transfer the scones on the prepared baking sheet and place in the oven (middle shelf) for 15 to 18 minutes, until the scones are nicely risen and golden brown on top. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Notes

• Optional cardamom glaze: In a large bowl, mix 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom, 3 tablespoons milk (or water) and 50 gr icing sugar until smooth. Glaze the scones once they have reached room temperature.

• Make sure the butter is very cold before starting the recipe, otherwise you won't get the right scone (crumbly) consistency. The technique used to make the scones is called the rub in method, find out more about it here. 

• Ratio to make your own self-raising flour is 1 teaspoon of baking powder for 150 gr of plain flour.