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Thursday, July 12, 2007

July 10, 2007: Parmesan and rosemary scones

Although my paternal grandmother consistently baked fantastic pumpkin-sultana scones when I was growing up, the sweet scone has never really been a favourite of mine. Instead it's one vaguely-remembered instance of cheese scones, baked by my maternal grandmother for lunch, that haunts me. Earlier this winter I was reminded of them, for no apparent reason, and I've been longing for them ever since. When an appropriate weekend lunch at home didn't arise I took matters into my own hands and booked them in for dinner. I suspected that Michael wouldn't approve of scones for dinner so I prepared them on a Tuesday night - on Tuesdays Michael comes home late and I do the shopping and cooking unsupervised. To make the scones more dinner-appropriate I thought I'd team them with soup.

This recipe comes not from my grandmother - rather, it's a combination of "Lily's Scones" from Nigella Lawson's How To Be A Domestic Goddess, Angie's rosemary and cheese scones (themselves inspired by Lily's Scones) and a few personal tweaks of convenience. I'm not the most adept at combining, kneading and rolling in the brief and gentle way that yields a light, fluffy scone. Even so, an oven-warm (or lightly microwaved) specimen spread with butter has been a wonderful thing. These scones would indeed be a lovely companion to a bowl of tomato soup, if I hadn't relied on the canned variety on this time-poor weeknight. So it was a meal that offered some contentment for the present, and anticipation of some much better future dinners when my scone-kneading and soup-making skills have improved.

Parmesan and rosemary scones

500g plain flour
1 teaspoon salt
~5-6 teaspoons baking powder (not very precise, I know, but I was finishing off a jar)
75g cold butter, diced
75g parmesan cheese, grated
2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped (this is fairly subtle, you could increase it up to a tablespoon if you love rosemary)
300mL milk
extra milk

Preheat the oven to 220 degrees C and grease a baking tray.

Sift the flour, salt and baking powder into a large bowl. Rub in the butter until it's evenly distributed. (Damn, I hate this step. Might cheat and try the food processor next time.) Stir in the grated cheese and rosemary. Add the milk and stir only until just combined to form a dough.

Lightly flour a work surface and briefly knead the dough. Roll it out to 3cm thick. Dip a round cutter (I use a drinking glass) in flour and cut out scones, placing them on the baking tray. Re-roll the last scraps of dough to make a couple more. You should have about a dozen scones, although I had about 7 monster-scones instead. Brush the tops of the scones with milk and bake for about 10 minutes, or they rise and turn golden.


  1. warm scones would even make tinned soup wonderful - sounds like a great sunday night supper. I also hate the rubbing butter into flour - and have often used a glass to make scone!

    I have tagged you and Michael for an 8 things about my day meme - if you have the time and interest.

  2. I cannot believe how fluffy and delicious those scones look. I will really have to give this recipe a try.

  3. Lovely post.

    Don't really like the sweet ones either - but a cheesy one pushes all the right buttons.

    Will make this weekend. Delish!

  4. Thanks for the tag, Johanna! We'll get onto it after the weekend.

    Julie and Lucy - I definitely think they're worth a try and hope you enjoy them as much as I did. :-)

  5. Oooh, perhaps my next step is to try a scone of the savoury variety? With the rain pouring down outside my window, soup and a scone sounds like a wonderful meal :)

  6. Ellie, I'd love to see what you come up with! I don't want to be feeding your kitchen addiction unnecessarily though. :-D

  7. Hello Cindy, you just reminded me I haven't made these scones in a while :p Yours looks tall and yummy!

  8. Welcome, Angie! My scones got a bit out of hand, what with the large cup I used to cut them. :-D

    We loved the recipe - thanks for the inspiration your post provided.

  9. one recipe says 75 g butter another says 125g of butter which is it - can defiitely ruin a future scone!! Thanks for clarification!

  10. I used 75g as I said above, Anon.