Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Cream Tea at Home

Home-made Raspberry Jam and Plain Scones

After my fruit picking experience last week I was left with a rather large quantity of raspberries and decided I would make some jam.

Tying in with my ambition to bake more, what better opportunity than to bake some plain scones, a firm favourite served with lashings of cream and a generous spreading of jam.

After all no afternoon tea would be complete without deliciously buttery cream scones with jam.

Raspberry Jam

800g Caster Sugar
800g Raspberries, washed
1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract
2 Tbsp Lime Juice

This makes enough to fill two 400g jam jars - which will need to be sterilised.

Pre-heat oven to 180C and place a small plate or saucer into the fridge to cool.

Place sugar on a baking tray and place in the oven for 8-12 minutes till it's warmed right through.

In the meantime pop the raspberries in a large saucepan and put on a low heat till the fruit has softened.

Once the sugar is warm pour into the fruit and add the vanilla extract and freshly squeezed lime juice.

Cook up to a boil and then simmer quite vigorously for 30-40 minutes.

To sterilise the jam jars remove the lids and place upside down in the hot oven for 15 minutes or until the jam is ready.

To test if the jam is ready, take the cold saucer from the fridge and get half a teaspoon of the mixture and pop onto the plate. This will be very, very hot, so leave for two-three minutes to cool, then press against it with your finger. If it starts to wrinkle up and feel firm, then it's ready. If not, keep on the heat for a further five minutes and test again. Repeat until ready.

Once ready pour into the jam jars and place a round of baking paper over the top and an elastic band. Once this has completely cooled down you can put the proper lid on.

This makes for a gorgeously sweet jam and is perfect for spreading on toast, crumpets, scones or for use in baking such as jam roly poly or jam tarts.

Plain Scones

225g Plain Flour
2 Tsp Baking Powder
1/2 Tsp Salt
30g Caster Sugar
150ml Milk
50g Butter

In a bowl mix the sugar, flour, baking powder and salt and then use the rubbing in method to mix the butter in. Using only your fingertips after a few minutes you should be left with a breadcrumb mix - similar to that of a crumble topping.

Slowly add the milk, bit by bit till this forms a firm and pliable dough.

Turn out onto a floured side, making sure your hands are floured too and flatten out into a circle, which should be over 1cm thick.

Cut out the scones. (Traditionally these are made round, but I made heart-shaped ones).

Put onto a tray lined with greaseproof paper which has also been greased.

Brush the tops with a little reserved milk and bake for 10-12 minutes until golden brown.

Place on a wire cooling rack and allow to cool.

To serve cut in half and layer on some extra thick double cream or some clotted cream and a generous helping of the raspberry jam. Not mandatory to have tea with your scones however from my point of view - advisable.

Cream tea in the comfort of your own home - wonderful.

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