Finnish winter can be a bit depressing at times. Hardly any daylight, mainly rain from October to January, at least in the southern parts of the country. There may be days when you need an extra hug. Even days when you need something more than that. Recent times have not been so easy in the politics front, either: Brexit on the European agenda, social and health reform on the Finnish agenda, unrest and post-truth in the international debates – not exactly a surfeit of good news in sight… Longing for something warm and comforting is hardly surprising.
For days like that, I’ve got just the thing for you:
It is hardly a coincidence that scones first became popular in the UK in the early years of Queen Victoria’s reign in the 1840s, a time when people were also desperate for comfort and domesticity.
Even in Helsinki you can enjoy some pretty decent afternoon teas with scones and other goodies these days. Worth mentioning are for instance Salutorget, Hotel Kämp and Bergga in Kallio.
Personally I’ve been a fan of scones since school days and for decades searched for that perfect recipe, until found Nigella Lawson’s recipe for Lily’s scones. Use this recipe and let me tell you, your scones will be second to none! Simply sumptuous!
500 g flour
1 teaspoon of salt
2 teaspoon of baking soda
4,5 teaspoons of cream of tartar (potassium hydrogen tartrate – tartaric acid, ‘viinikivi’ in Finnish)
125 g butter
300 ml milk
Mix the dry ingredients, then add soft butter and milk without overworking the dough.
Cut the dough into 10-15 scones (depending on your taste, whether you prefer your scones nice and plump or perhaps a bit more small and delicate…)
+ 1 egg for egg washing the scones before putting them into the oven.
Bake in 225°C for 15-20 minutes
PS:Some people may see this as a bit unorthodox, but I just love scones with butter and a nice slice of cheddar cheese! The absolutely best combination for me is still raspberry jam and double cream or – if available! – clotted cream. If you’re brave and ambitious, you may also try to make your own clotted cream! As most things, you can find advice and inspiration from Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LDyyAb6lB48.