I love tea time! When I was in kindergarten, one of my favorite moments was to open my Minnie Mouse snack box which my mom packed for me every morning. I always knew there would be those pretty sugary belly-button biscuits, chocolate-coated Digestives and bite-sized sausages, but my anticipation for tea time never ceased. I know they are nothing fancy, but that was tea time and I was happy.
Now in Hong Kong, afternoon tea sets can get quite lavish and sumptuous and having tea seems lofty and regal. But I really do not think tea time is exclusive to rich taitais, rich married ladies who do not have to work and sip their Early Grey tea well-mannerly with their pinkies up in the air. Instead, tea time can be simple, can be something enjoyed by everyone and form part of a child's fondest memories.
Why pay a hundred dollars to restaurants when one can make scones that are just as amazing but more fresh at only HK$3 each in 30 minutes?!
(Servings: 10 scones)
- 350g self-raising flour
- a pinch of salt
- 1 tsp of baking powder
- 85g of cold butter, cubed
- 175ml of milk
- 3 tbs of sugar
- 70g of raisins
- a few drops of vanilla essence
- a few drops of lemon juice (around 8 drops)
- 1 beaten egg
1. Preheat the oven to 200C. Line your baking try with baking paper.
2. In a large bowl, mix together the self-raising flour, salt and baking powder.
3. Roughly cut the butter into cubes and rub them into the flour mix with your fingers. You know you're ready when there are no more lumps of butter and the flour mix is fine and takes on a hint of pale yellow.
4. Throw into the flour mix the sugar and raisins and mix well. So there's your dry ingredients.
5. Gently heat the milk over the stove or microwave it for 30 seconds so it becomes warm, not hot. Stir in a few drops of vanilla essence and lemon juice.
6. Pour the milk over your dry ingredients and incorporate them with a spatula.The dough is slightly moist at this point.
7. Dust a flat surface with some self-raising flour and knead the dough very lightly with around 4 folds. Do not over-knead otherwise the scones will be dry and tough.
8. Gently pat and flatten the dough until it is around 2cm thick. Use a flour-dusted 6cm-round cookie cutter to stamp out the scones. Lightly knead the leftover/edges so to create one dough again, pat to flatten and stamp out more scones. Repeat this process to use it all up.
9. Line up the scones on the baking tray and brush the tops and sides of the scones with the beaten egg. This will help create the beautiful golden colour.
10. Bake the scones for 12 minutes.
11. Cool the scones on a cooling rack and serve them warm with jam, butter or clotted cream. You can quickly warm up the scones with the oven but not the microwave.The microwave will soften the scones.