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Scomnibus: Cheese and Honey | Elly Baba and the Forty-three Scones | Cheese and Chilli Part Three

30, June, 2012

I’ve had a lot of scone action recently, but haven’t had the time to write it up (thanks, wedding). So I thought I’d combine my last three sconecapades into a bumper edition.

Cheese and Honey Scones

One of my favourite comfort foods for a cold, wintry Sunday afternoon is a toasted crumpet spread with butter then topped with honey and a slice or two of cheddar. The honey and the butter mix together and soak right through to the bottom of the crumpet, the cheese goes a little bit soft but doesn’t quite melt and the whole thing is deliciously messy to eat. That’s why cheese and honey scones seemed like an obvious choice when I was craving something warm and delicious to eat.

I used a standard recipe for cheese scones, but switched in some of the liquid with honey and added a mix of cheddar and blue cheese – I would recommend something along these lines:

• 225g self-raising flour

• 50g cheese

• 100ml milk

• 1tbsp honey

• 55g butter

• Pinch of salt

Mix together the salt and flour, then rub in the butter to make bread crumbs. Make a well and drop the honey into the centre, then gradually stir in the milk until you have a soft, workable dough. Roll out onto a floured surface and cut out rounds about 6cm across and ¾ inch thick. Place on a greased baking tray and bake at 180°c for about 15 minutes or until golden brown.

You can do something perfectly a hundred times and think you’re an expert, but every now and then things still go horribly wrong. I pulled these scones out of the oven far too soon, proudly presented one to the Official Taster then watched, mortified, as he cut it open only to find out it was still gooey inside. And not a delicious, cheese-and-honey kind of gooey you’ll find later in this post, but the uncooked-dough kind. Back into the oven they went.

When they came out the second time they were significantly improved. The flavours were subtle, particularly the honey, but you could taste a hint of sweetness against the cheese. The verdict: Worth an experiment but I’ll stick to adding things like mustard or chilli to my cheese scones, and save the honey for my crumpets.

P.S. The dots in the picture are poppyseeds, which I’d forgotten I’d added. I’m not sure why I did, now.

Elly Baba and the Forty Scones

Last weekend was my Granny’s 100th birthday, meaning my whole family, including cousins I hadn’t seen for nearly 20 years, converged on her little flat in Leicester. In preparation for this, I made 40 scones (well, actually 43) to go alongside a huge spread of party food. I used the same BBC recipe as when I made a similar quantity of scones for my friend’s hen do.

Unfortunately, I didn’t think about taking a photo of them until they were packed up and ready for the drive, at which point I realised that nothing makes scones look less appetising then cramming 40 of them into a Tupperware box. Here are the scones that came home with me at the end of the party – should I be offended?

Anyway, happy birthday, Granny. I’m sorry the card I got you wasn’t as fancy as the one the Queen sent, but she didn’t make you scones, did she? DID SHE??

Cheese and Chilli Scones Part Three

If you’ve been reading this scone blog since the beginning, you may remember that cheese and chilli scones were the first I ever posted about. They are a firm favourite of the Official Taster and made an accidental reappearance last year (in fact on my Granny’s 99th birthday) as Cheesy Chilli Bombs.

When I was making the aforementioned 43 plain scones for the party, a hungry-looking OT walked into the kitchen and asked if there was any chance just one of the scones could be converted into a cheese and chilli scone, using one of the Serrano chillis growing on our window sill. I explained to him that the dough was already sweet, so wouldn’t work with cheese and chilli, but I couldn’t bear the forlorn look on his face, so promised to make him a batch all to himself after the party. He also requested that they be ‘all melty’ on the inside, something I previously attempted when I made French onion soup Scones.

I used the same recipe as the first time I made cheese and chilli scones, but when I rolled out the dough, I made it half as thick as normal, sprinkled grated cheddar on one half, then folded it over like an omelette. Then I rolled it out a bit more to squash the top and the bottom together, before cutting out the rounds and baking them as normal. They still pulled apart a little in the oven, but the cheese inside still stayed all melty instead of getting crispy like I was worried about. The proof of the scone is in the eating, and these didn’t barely lasted the day.

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