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The very best Scone

September 4, 2012

Scones ready for the oven

Recently, Brisbane hosted it’s annual EKKA. What is “EKKA”, you may ask? The Ekka is the annual agricultural show of Queensland, Australia. It was originally called the Brisbane Exhibition, however it is commonly called the Ekka, which is actually the abbreviated slang version of “Exhibition” and is akin to the Royal Melbourne/Sydney Show down south.

It is where the country comes to the city, the original purpose of the agricultural show, back in 1876, was to show off many agricultural and industrial exhibits. It was a chance for people to show off newly invented agricultural devices such as ultra modern plowing, sowing and harvesting artifacts. Cattle and other farm animals were also exhibited during the show, a practice that remains to this day. Now it is a platform for art exhibitions, cooking contests & demonstrations, show bags, rides and having lots of fun.

A regular attendee is the Country Womens Association (CWA) – the largest women’s organisation in Australia – where they run a tea shop and serve their famous scones. Nothing beats a home-baked scone, fresh from the oven, served with plenty of homemade jam and whipped cream.

I have to admit, I didn’t try the CWA scones at the Ekka this year, I went home and made my own with this unorthodox recipe which works every time.

In a large bowl sift in 2 cup of SR flour. Add 1 cup of pure cream and 1 cup of lemonade (or soda or beer) and mix very briefly and lightly.  When it is almost mixed through, turn out onto a board and form to a patty about 3 cm thick. Stamp out some circles with a biscuit cutter or glass and bake in a moderately hot oven for about 12 minutes.

The secret here is to have the cream & lemonade very cold and NOT to overwork the dough. Serve with jam & cream. Scones can be flavoured with dried fruit or herbs & spices to make savoury scones but I think the plain original ones are the best.

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