Sunday, 18 March 2012


Takes: 35 minutes
Makes: 6

Man-scones are a variation of the English classic that has been catered to the tastes of the men in my life- they are huge, rugged, and (most of all) delicious.
Man-scones differ from regular scones in 4 major ways:

  1. They are approximately twice the size
  2. They contain about twice as many raisins per square inch
  3. They are much crunchier on the outside, preferably with slightly puffed up/burned raisins (though still soft on the inside)
  4. They are should look rugged and distressed- irregular shaping is vital
Note: The aim of the game when making scones is to work as quickly as possible and try not to touch anything inside the bowl with your hands- if the butter melts, the scones will end up dense and horrible 

Bakeware from dystopian future
Ingredients (makes 5-6 Man-Scones):
8 oz self-raising flour
3 oz butter or Stork
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 oz caster sugar
1 heaped cup raisins (alter to taste)
1 egg
2 tbsp buttermilk (or, 1 tbsp milk, one tbsp Greek yoghurt)

Cut it like you're from Harlow

  1. Preheat the oven to 220C and grease a baking tray. Sift the flour into the bowl with the butter. 
    Use two knives in a scissoring motion to cut the butter up really finely in with the flour. Keep shaking the bowl up and down to bring the lumps of butter to the top
  2. Gently but quickly rub in the butter between your fingertips until the whole mix resembles bread crumbs. Pour in the sugar and salt

  3. Beat the egg with the buttermilk (or buttermilk substitute) in a separate bowl. Add half the wet mix to the dry and mix in with a blunt knife and chopping motions
    Egg slop

  4. Add the raisins. Add more raisins if you want- there's nothing more disappointing than a scone bereft of fruity goodness

  5. Mix in the rest of the egg slop with the scone mix with your knife until it starts forming a ball. Briefly and gingerly shape it into a ball with your hands. Be aware that if you over-knead it, the gluten strands in the flour will turn your delicious crumbly scone into a bit of rock-hard fruit bread 

  6. At this point one would usually start rolling out and cutting the mixture. NOT SO WITH MAN-SCONES. It's boring, makes them uniform, and results in them warming up and losing air, so no squishy insides. Instead, break off lumps with your hands and place on the baking tray. Make them approximately the same size so they all cook vaguely consistently
  7. Brush with either a beaten egg or just some milk. Ridiculously specific protip: Instead of actually brushing, just lightly slap the scones with the wet brush, because otherwise you end up mushing the mix around and it takes much longer

  8. Bake for about 15-20 minutes. Check after 15, but do not be afraid of puffed up, burned raisins. Remember that these are big scones, so will take longer to cook than normal ones

  9. Place on a wire rack and gaze lovingly at them until the raisins cool enough to eat

  10. Chow down. These scones are good enough to eat just with butter- I personally think jam and cream rather ruins scones when they're this good.
I know these look like rock cakes, but on the inside they are soft and buttery

PS: I also made these adorable mini-man scones
 for our Mother's Day tea. They are still ruggedly handsome.

(Note to my non-English readers: In England there is great controversy gained from tedious conversations as to whether these are pronounced "Scone-as-in-gone" or "Scone-as-in-stone". It is literally likely to come up in any scenario in which scones are mentioned in front of people deriving from more than one family. If you ever find yourself in one of these conversations, please remind all those around you that using "U or non-U" rules of pronunciation to define one's social class is very old-hat. If you ever mention that the Americans call something similar to this "biscuits", you will incur a fascinating monologue about the differences between American and English vocabulary which everyone has heard at least ten times in their life if they are above the age of 12.

Just thought I ought to warn you.)

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