Monday, 15 March 2010
It's going to be Easter in just a few short weeks. I love Easter and have many fond memories from when I was a child . . . it's one of my favourite holidays.
The Easter Bunny always left us a whole lot of goodies . . . chocolate Easter Bunnies, chocolate Easter Eggs, those marshmallow filled candy eggs and if we were really lucky a fresh new bag of marbles or a jug of bubbles to blow.
My mom always used to stay up really late on Easter Eve colouring eggs with crayons to surprise us with on Easter Morning. She never hard boiled the eggs, they were always raw and my oh my, they were always so pretty . . . some with varied coloured stripes (my favourites) and others with pastel swirls and curls.
She would poke a hole into each end with her darning needle, and we would blow the insides out until our cheeks hurt, ready for Easter Morning scrambled eggs . . . and then the empty shells would be gathered on a string of yarn and tied so that we could wear them around our necks. We would each vie to see who could get through the whole day with the most empty eggs left intact!!
Another thing that I always loved about Easter was hot cross buns on Easter morning, fresh and piping hot from the oven, toasted and then spread with cold butter . . . . so so moreish, it's tasty buttery goodness melting into all the nooks and crannies. Oh my . . .
Can there be anything better or tastier on earth????
. . . well . . . ahem . . . not unless you count these divine little treats.
Hot Cross Scones. All the scrummy yuminess of a hot cross bun . . . cept in the crumbly buttery goodness of a moist and tasty scone!!!
You can have these babies mixed, baked and sitting on your plate just waiting to be devoured in just slightly more than half an hour . . . that's not bad.
I dare say these are quite . . . quite . . . dangerous to have around.
Good thing Easter only comes but once a year!
*Hot Cross Scones*
All the fruity and spicy flavours of a delicious hot cross bun, in a scrummy moist home baked scone. You can use the traditional hot cross on the top made out of flour paste, or you use my preference of one made with an icing sugar glaze.
225g self raising flour, plus extra for dusting
75g butter, softened
40g light muscovado sugar
75g small sultana raisins
50g cut mixed peel
1/2 tsp ground mixed spice
1 large egg, beaten
3 TBS buttermilk, plus extra for brushing
demerara sugar for dusting (optional)
For flour paste crosses:
50g plain flour
For icing glaze:
2 ounces sifted icing sugar
Preheat the oven to 220*C/425*f. Lightly butter a baking sheet. Set aside.
Sift the flour into a large bowl. Drop in the butter and rub it in with your fingertips until it resembles bread crumbs. Stir in the muscovado sugar, sultanas, peel and spice.
Beat together the egg and buttermilk. Pour into the flour mixture and bring together with a fork to make a soft dough. Lightly dust the countertop with flour and turn the dough out onto the counter. Roll or pat out to 1/2 inch thickness. Cut into rounds with a 2 inch round cutter, giving it a sharp tap down and lift straight up, without twisting. Place onto the prepared baking sheet. Re-roll any trimmings and repeat until all the dough is used up. Cut a cross shape in the top with a sharp knife and brush with some more buttermilk. Sprinkle demerara sugar on top if desired.
If you are making the paste crossed, mix together the flour and sugar and 1 to 2 TBS of water. Knead to make a smooth dough. Roll out and cut into thin strips to make a cross on top of each scone.
Bake for 15 minutes until well risen and golden brown. Cool slightly on a wire rack.
Whisk together the icing sugar and enough milk to make a drizzle. Drizzle this over top of the scones in a cross pattern if desired.
Serve warm, or split and toast the next day and serve with a smudge of butter.
hmm . . . guess I'll have to bake some more . . .