A warm cheesy scone, thickly spread with best butter is just about the perfect accompaniment for a bowl of hot, steaming soup for lunch. But then again, it's pretty darn good eaten standing over the kitchen counter at 4.00 in the afternoon... and I should know.
Cheddar and Parmesan Scones
from Belinda Jeffery's Mix & Bake
185g self-raising flour
80g stone-ground wholemeal self-raising flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard powder
pinch cayenne pepper
150g grated sharp cheddar cheese
30g parmesan, grated, plus extra for sprinkling
60g cold unsalted butter, cut into chunks
125ml cold milk
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C. Line a sturdy baking tray with two layers of baking paper and set aside.
Put both of the flours, salt, dry mustard and cayenne pepper into a food processor and whiz them for 15 seconds so they are well mixed and aerated. Add the cheeses and whirl them in for about 10 seconds. Dot the butter chunks over the top of the mixture and whiz them until the butter is cut into tiny bits.
Tip the flour mixture into a bowl and make a well in the middle. Pour the milk into the well and stir it in as best you can. When it becomes hard to stir, ditch the spoon and work it lightly into a dough with your hands.
Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and pat it out so it's 4-5cm thick. The dough will seem a little crumbly at this stage, but don't be tempted to add more milk.
Using a 6cm scone cutter, stamp out the scones. Put them on the prepared tray so they are quite close together. They will touch ever-so-slightly as they bake. Sprinkle with extra parmesan.
Bake for 20 minutes or until the scones are golden. When they're done, transfer them onto a wire rack. Cover them with a light cloth and leave them until they are just warm.