It’s Afternoon Tea Week this week and I’m sharing a couple of recipes from my book The Old Rectory: escape to a country kitchen, soon to be re-released by Endeavour Press (a week on Friday, 25th August). Wait for 25th as it’ll be available on Amazon and cheaper, in ebook and paperback!
The book has received many 5* reviews including “enchantingly told”, ” delightful”, ” a most engaging read”.
Cream Tea Scones
A staple of the traditional English cream tea.
50 g. (2 oz.) butter
25 g. (1 oz.) caster sugar
225 g. (9 oz.) self raising flour
1 tsp. baking powder
A little beaten egg or milk to glaze
Strawberry jam and double whipped cream (or Cornish clotted cream) to sandwich the scones, and a little icing sugar to dust the tops.
Preheat the oven to 220ºC, 425ºF/gas mark 7. Mix the flour, baking powder, and salt. Place all the ingredients into a bowl and mix to form a soft dough. Turn out onto a floured board and roll out to about 1 cm. (0.5 in.) thickness. Cut into rounds with a 5-cm. (2-in.) cutter and place the scones on a greased baking sheet. Brush lightly with milk or a lightly beaten egg. Bake in the oven for about 12–15 minutes. Cool on a wire cooling tray. Split each scone and spread with a layer of good fruity strawberry jam, topped with a dollop of whipped double cream, then place the other half on the top and dust with sieved icing sugar.
Lemon Iced Buns
250 g. (9 oz.) strong white flour, sifted
250 g. (9 oz.) plain flour, sifted
7 g. (0.25 oz.) fast-action dried yeast
2 tsp. fine sea salt
50 g. (2 oz.) caster sugar
125 ml. (4 fl. oz.) warmed milk
125 g. (4 fl. oz.) warmed water
1 egg, beaten
50 g. (2 oz.) butter, cut into cubes
Zest of 1 lemon
Vegetable oil for greasing
For the icing:
50 g. (2 oz.) icing sugar
Juice of 1 lemon
Preheat the oven to 220ºC, 425ºF/gas mark 7. Sift the flours and salt into a bowl. Add the water, milk, yeast, sugar, and lemon zest and mix with a fork until combined. Add the beaten egg and butter and continue to mix until the mixture is a sticky dough. Put the dough on a lightly floured board and knead for 5 minutes, until the dough is smooth and stretches like elastic. Lightly oil a bowl with some of the vegetable oil. Turn the dough into the bowl and carefully turn until it is entirely coated with oil. Cover with oiled cling film and leave to rise in a warm place for an hour. The dough should have doubled in size. Lightly grease two baking trays. Knock the dough back to its original size and then turn onto a floured board again. Divide the dough into 8 pieces and shape into fingers or rounds. Place on the greased baking sheets, ensuring plenty of space. Cover with a tea towel and leave to prove for 30 minutes. Bake in the oven for about 20–25 minutes, until well risen and golden brown. Remove the buns from the oven and leave to cool on a wire cooling rack.
The icing for the top: Made by simply combining the icing sugar and fresh lemon juice until smooth. When the buns are cool, spread icing over each bun and set aside until hardened. You can decorate with a little lemon zest for that extra oomph.
Sweet and sticky, with a little zestiness from the lemon, these buns are a favourite for afternoon tea.