In which I attempt to bake date scones

I’ve decided to become a date-scone-queen. I never used to like scones, but a few years ago my sister made scones from a new recipe, and they were great. I don’t like really dry scones, and I don’t like jam, so I couldn’t use jam to make them more, dare I say it, moist. But then this new recipe made itself known (thank you Woman’s Weekly Cookbook) (I never thought I’d compliment Woman’s Weekly, but here we are) and scones became my friends.

Living away from home in 2016 and 2017, I didn’t cook that much (except when I baked cupcakes in varying emotional states), and I didn’t mind having too much toast.

But somewhere in 2017, I wanted to cook more than omelettes (though, as we know, there is nothing wrong with omelettes!), but I didn’t start to cook yet, simply sussed out recipes online.

Now, I’ve cooked before. The kitchen isn’t a completely foreign place to me, it’s more that I’ve only done simple things. Which is a good place to start; if I were to try and make a duck dish today, it would be a train wreck.

Anyway, so this year I’ve decided to start off cooking simple things, or maybe a better term for them is basics, such as an omelette or a pasta dish. Though I can already cook omelettes (isn’t it satisfying when they look perfect?) and pasta. But there are some basics that I haven’t cooked, like a piece of steak. I don’t even like the thought of touching a raw steak! But one of these days, I will learn to cook a steak and I’ll take a picture and post it on my blog and you will all be very impressed.

Okay, back to being the date-scone-queen.

Today I baked fourteen date scones.

The recipe I followed (from the Australian Woman’s Weekly Cooking School cookbook) was meant to make 35 scones (35 scones!), but halving the recipe seemed like a good plan, because there is such a thing as too much scone mix. It was all going well, really it was; I popped the dry ingredients into the food processor (it said to do this by hand but hey) with some butter. The food processor did it’s thing (after I figured out that it only works once it’s locked in properly. It only took a few minutes of fiddling to work this out), and I chopped up a cup of dried dates and got the milk ready.

Before we move on, we should all understand that maths isn’t my strong point.

Let’s just say, the quantity of dry-to-wet ingredients was not quite correct. Waaay too much liquid. I checked the recipe several times before realising I hadn’t exactly halved the wet ingredients, I had simply decreased the amount by a minuscule amount.

Still, I kept going. I thought it’d be fine. I whacked the dough onto a board (after dusting it with flour. See, I’m practically a professional) and tried flattening it with my fingers, just like the recipe said.

Holy moly, there was wet dough everywhere. Everywhere. It was so horrendous I was tempted to wash it down the sink. (Instead, I put on some ABBA and got motivated to fix my mistake.)

I awkwardly folded in a bunch more flour, which actually helped. In the least, I was able to actually roll out the dough with my fingers without the dough just sticking to me and not rolling out. As I washed the dough off my hands, I think I legitimately washed off two scones, there was that much dough stuck to me.

I cut out my scones and chucked them onto a tray, lightly touching as per the AWW cookbook, and whacked it all into the oven (200ºC, fan-forced). Once they were safely warming up, I cleaned the mess I had created so no one could see the destruction the kitchen bench had faced, and washed and wiped up, hiding all evidence that I had been there at all.

Because of the slightly dodgy manner in which the flour had made it’s way into the scones, they cooked a little weirdly. They were rugged on top and didn’t rise too much; they rose a little, which made me happy because at least I used the right kind of flour. So they looked a little strange (not the perfectly fluffy golden scones one would see on a cooking show) but when I ate them? Two thumbs up campers, two thumbs up! If I had more thumbs, they would get more than two, but alas that’s not the case. I had two scones fresh, with melted butter and a big cup of tea.

I’m calling it a success, considering it was my first time making date scones, or any scones at all.

Here they are, looking happily bunched together, cooling down from their oven experience
Literally happy scones!

My date scones look homemade, but they taste gooood. Whoever thought of combining flour, butter and milk is a genius.

Sarah xx

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