Light & Fluffy Scones

These scones are so light and fluffy they are cloud-like, they are probably what angels eat for afternoon tea. Add some lightly whipped cream and a jewel-like spoonful of ruby red jam and I could feasibly be in heaven.

For me scones are the ideal goodie on any day of any season, but the lightness of these does rather make them ideal for a Summer afternoon tea treat in the garden.

While I am no stranger to the joy of baking I’m no expert on its alchemy. The magical chemistry behind using just the right of amount of each surprisingly plain ingredient to conjure up the tastiest of morsels remains largely a mystery.

But what I have found when making scones is that the less I mix and handle the dough the lighter the scone. I also recently discovered extra fine self raising flour which has resulted in not only angelic scones but impressively well risen sponges (not something I can always attest to). It’s more expensive than your everyday self raising flour but I’d say a worthy investment.

Serve these with your favourite jam and, if it’s Summer, a couple of ripe strawberries. You can’t beat a dollop of clotted cream but on this occasion I happened to have some double cream in the fridge, which I lightly whipped at the last minute as the kids were complaining about the absence of clotted cream (honestly!). No cream? Just jam is delightful or a light spread of butter.

Light & Fluffy Scones Recipe

I usually make 8 – 10 depending on the size of cutter

Ingredients

  • 225g self-raising flour (or extra fine SR flour)
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons of caster sugar
  • 70g chilled butter, diced
  • 150ml milk

Method

  • Preheat your oven to 230 C / 210 C fan / gas 8
  • Lightly butter a baking sheet
  • Sift your flour and baking powder into a large bowl, then stir in the sugar
  • Plop in your diced, chilled butter and rub it into the flour until it looks like breadcrumbs.
  • Make a well in the middle of the breadcrumb like mix and pour in the milk. Start to mix the flour into the liquid with a metal spoon. Once it is all mixed you should have a lovely soft dough. If it’s too sticky add a little more flour.
  • Lovingly tip your dough onto a floured surface and gently pat out to a thickness of about 2cm. Cut the scones into rounds and place on the baking tray.
  • You will have to reform your dough and pat out again to continue cutting the scones, until you have used up all of the dough.
  • Now pop the tray of scones in the oven and bake in the middle of the oven for 12 minutes. At this point your scones should be gloriously risen and golden brown. If they are not quite perfect just leave them for another 2 – 3 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and allow them to cool on a wire rack. In my opinion they are best eaten when still slightly warm… who could wait any longer.

Fluffy Banana Pancakes

We eat pancakes for a lovely relaxing weekend breakfast fairly regularly, simply because the kids love them. When my son asked for them recently I felt like I needed to jazz things up a bit, I do tend to get bored quite easily.

I’ve tried a few different jazzy additions to my pancake batter like blueberries, raspberries, chocolate chips and seeds but these banana beauties seem to impress the most.

A banana pancake might sound rather humble but it tastes anything but. The flavour is actually quite subtle but that is to its merit and it is matched by an equally delicate whiff of vanilla. What’s more, adding a mashed up banana to my pancake mix seems to make them lighter and fluffier, almost cloud like.

So roll up your sleeves and get whisking, banana pancakes are calling.

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Fluffy Banana Pancakes Recipe

Serves 5 – 6 hungry pancake lovers

Ingredients

  • 450ml milk (plant milk will work but I tend to use semi-skimmed)
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 banana, mashed to a puree
  • 1 teaspoon of good quality vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon of caster sugar
  • 330g plain flour
  • 3 heaped teaspoons of baking powder

Method

  • First of all decide if you want to serve these as soon as they are cooked to eagerly waiting greedy people, or if you want to serve them all as a big stack once you’ve cooked them all. If you want to cook them all before serving, pop your oven on to about 100C and pop in a baking tray with a bit of foil over it so that you can keep the pancakes warm and soft.
  • In a large jug thoroughly whisk the eggs, milk and vanilla then whisk in the banana and sugar.
  • Mix the flour and baking powder together then add this to the other ingredients and whisk again.
  • Heat a pan to a medium heat and smear a very small amount of butter or oil in your pan.
  • Drop large tablespoons of pancake batter into the pan and cook for a couple of minutes. I can usually get 3 at a time in my pan.
  • Flip over your pancakes once they are golden and cook for a further minute on the other side. You should see them puff up nicely.

Warning! One of the best pieces of culinary advice I have ever received is NEVER PAT A PANCAKE or press down on it or it will loose it’s puff! If we wanted a flat pancake we’d be making crepes.

  • Keep cooking in batches until you have used all the batter.
  • Serve with more banana, honey, pecans, chocolate spread or, my fave, blueberries and maple syrup.