the scone age

Way back in the early 1990s, my friend Alice and I were a little obsessed with scones. We both had the tiny cookbook Biscuits and Scones by Elizabeth Alston, and nearly every day we would get together for scones, tea, and knitting. The book appears to be out of print now, which is a shame, because it has a ton of great yet simple recipes.
Today I dug out the cookbook and made Peggy’s Cheese Scones to go with some chicken stew. They were pretty darn tasty.

cheese scones.JPG

Read on for the recipe …

Peggy’s Cheese Scones from Biscuits & Scones by Elizabeth Alston
Makes 12 scones
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp cream of tartar (see note)
1/2 tsp baking soda (see note)
1 tsp dry mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 stick (4 Tbsp) cold, unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
2 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese
1 large egg
1/2 cup milk
Preheat the oven to 400F. Put the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, dry mustard, and salt into a large bowl; whisk to combine. Add the butter and rub in with your fingers until the mixture looks like fine crumbs. Add the cheese and toss gently to combine.
Measure the milk into a measuring cup then break the egg into it. Combine with a fork. Pour over the flour mixture and stir with the fork until it comes together into a dough.
Turn out onto a lightly floured board and knead 10-12 times (I am lazy, so I usually just use a wide bowl to begin with and just knead in the bowl!). Cut the dough in half. Form each half into a ball and place onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Gently flatten each ball into a 6″ circle. Cut each circle into 6 wedges.
Bake 12-15 minutes or until they start to brown a bit. Remove from the cookie sheet onto a cooling rack lined with a towel. Loosely cover the scones with the other half of the towel and let cool.
Note: You can substitute 1 1/2 tsp baking powder for the cream of tartar and baking soda.

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14 Responses to the scone age

  1. gleek says:

    ooh, i love cream of tartar in biscuits! it gives it a little punch you would normally not recognize. mmmmm..

  2. susan says:

    are those yours or the picture from the book? they look so wonderful! i am sad and jealous i can’t cook anything… i thought i had something like a toaster oven in my china beach apartment, but it turns out it’s a dish purifier…

  3. autum says:

    Those look and sound yummy. I am a southern girl and we eat lots of biscuits in the south. What is the difference between a scone and a biscuit?

  4. debbie says:

    those scones look so ono! last year a friend shared some little scones from sconees bakery, and since then i’ve dreamt of baking some….

  5. Marg says:

    I made my friend Angie scones for her birthday using the recipe in the Harrod’s Cookbook. I added fresh currants since it was January and told her they were garnet scones. They were quite tasty! Now I’m sorry I didn’t take a picture. 🙁

  6. Ani says:

    Gosh that sounds tasty. Too bad the cookbook is out of print. Tea, scones and knitting seems good to me.

  7. monica says:

    I have the same book! Mine’s buried in storage so I can’t dig it out yet but I’ve made a few things out of it and they turned out well.

  8. Daphne says:

    Are you telling me I can use cream of tartar + baking soda instead of baking powder in my recipes? So interesting and so good to have subs for when I run out of things. I have been pretty much out of the baking powder for a while since they don’t have it at the co-op for some reason (no organic supplier?).

  9. Julia says:

    Mmm… god I love scones. Hard on the outside, soft and bready and sweet in the middle. The best scones I’ve had were cranberry orange scones at the coffee shop down the street. The other best scone I’ve had was at Ruthie B’s in Springfield, Oregon (near Eugene) a fabulous antique store/brunch cafe. The tables are set up in the antique store actually, in little nooks, with vintage stuff everywhere and vintage tea service! The scones are big and served with fresh cream. *Drool*

  10. Norma says:

    Every time I come here I marvel at the fact that you don’t weigh 450 pounds. 😉
    Oh, how I love and miss scones!!!!

  11. Shelly says:

    Scones…LOVE THEM!!!
    I make a banana one with walnuts and sugar on top. I “claim” that it is for the family on lazy weekend mornings, but I usually end up eating most of them myself…

  12. joyce says:

    mmmm…must try the recipe.

  13. Robin says:

    Love scones! My mum used to bake cheese scones for us and I would eat them warm from the oven with a little butter – yummy! Good childhood memories.

  14. Kathy says:

    I have that cookbook! There are some great recipes in there :-).

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