What’s a royal wedding without the perfect scones? Enjoy your english celebration with a royal-worthy scone recipe.
This tea-riffic recipe is used by the Lord and Lady Carnarvon of the United Kingdom, personal friends of Queen Elizabeth II, making these scones a wonderful addition to your royal celebration. Lord Carnarvon is the Queen’s godson and was given the Earldom after the passing of his father, the 7th Earl of Carnarvon, in 2001. The 7th Earl of Carnarvon was known as Queen Elizabeth II’s riding manager and close confidant. The current Lord and Lady Carnarvon now reside part-time at Highclere Castle, best known as the set of the hit television show, Downton Abbey.
Lady Carnarvon published her family’s scone recipe in her book, “At Home at Highclere: Entertaining at The Real Downton Abbey.” The original recipe is very simple, but can be complicated due to it’s use of European baking measurements. For ease of use, I have presented the measurements in North American baking standards.
“Originally made with unleavened oats and cooked on a griddle, scones today are generally sweetened and served with clotted cream and jam. In Devon they are spread with the cream first and then jam, and in Cornwall it is jam first and then cream—the choice is yours!,” according to Lady Carnarvon in “At Home at Highclere.”
I hope you enjoy this scone recipe and your royal wedding celebrations!
Scones – Lady Carnarvon’s Recipe
Makes about 6 scones
1 1/2 cups of self-raising flour, plus extra for dusting
1/2 tsp of salt
1 tsp of baking powder
1/4 cup of chilled unsalted butter, cubed
1/5 cup of caster sugar
1 medium egg, beaten
1/2 cup of whole milk
1/2 tsp of pure vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 450˚F.
- Dust a baking tray with flour and place it in the fridge.
- For cleaning ease, place a piece of parchment paper on the tray before flouring and chilling.
- Sift the flour, salt and baking powder into a mixing bowl.
- Massage the butter into the dry mixture with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs, then stir in the sugar.
- Mix together the egg and milk in a separate bowl and pour sporadically into the flour mixture to form a sticky, soft dough. Save some remaining milk and egg mixture for later.
- I choose to add vanilla extract into the egg and milk mixture to enhance the taste of the scones.
- Place the dough on a floured board or worktop and quickly and gently shape it into a round about 2cm (3/4 in) thick. Handle the dough as little as possible and cut out scones cleanly with a plain 5-5cm (2 1/4in) floured cutter.
- Tip: Instead of a proper cutter, I used the rim of a small, circular water glass as a dough cutter.
- Place on the chilled, floured baking tray and brush each scone lightly with some of the remaining egg and milk mixture.
- Bake in the oven for 9-10 minutes until golden brown and well risen.
- Put a clean tea towel onto a wire rack. Lift the scones off the baking tray with a serving spatula, transfer to the tea towel and wrap the towel around the scones.
- Serve with clotted cream and jam.
- Before serving, I also sprinkle a fine coating of icing sugar overtop of the scones.
This recipe can be prepared in advance and kept in the fridge until you are ready to bake and enjoy them, making them the perfect treat for your royal wedding viewing party. These scones are also best served while warm, so try to enjoy them soon after baking!
Do you have a favourite scone recipe? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below!