A scone, a scone, my kingdom for a scone! (How-to Wednesday #1)

So the question of the century (or at least of the minute?)…How do you make sure your scones rise and prevent them from coming out of the oven like hot little tooth-breaking lumps? Some people swear by lemonade or even just sheer willpower/prayers/meditation/spells, but my secret is buttermilk!

Ingredients (to make 16 fist-sized or 24 bite-sized scones):

  • 3 ½ cups self-raising flour
  • 2 tbs caster sugar
  • 60g butter (I like to use regular butter rather than unsalted to give the scones that slightly moreish savoury flavour)
  • 1 and a half cups buttermilk
  • Jam and cream (preferably double cream) to serve!


  1. Preheat oven 200° Celsius
  2. Prepare a regular loaf tin (23 x 13 x 7cm or 9 x 5 x 3 inches if you’re imperially inclined)
  3. Mix flour and sugar in a large bowl
  4. Add butter (at room temperature) and rub into the flour with your fingers until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs
  5. Make a well in the centre of the flour and add buttermilk. Stir with a spatula until the dough almost comes together (see pictures below)
  6. Place on a lightly floured surface and knead gently until the dough comes together
  7. Press out to roughly 3cm thickness with a rolling pin
  8. Using a cookie cutter (I actually just use an upturned glass or other round-topped container) cut into 5cm rounds for biggish scones, 3cm for bite-sized
  9. Place scones, just touching, into your tin
  10. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until lightly golden on top and hollow when tapped

Et voila!

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