While we all want to travel the world or at least have a nice summer holiday somewhere where it doesn’t rain constantly (or is it just the Austrians?), sometimes even a weekend trip isn’t possible: money, time, family – whatever the reason, it leaves me with itchy feet and in a sulky mood. So I found ways to appease my travel bug and the most effective one is: cooking.
Basically, when I’m sulking because I haven’t made it to country X yet (and judging by my bank account probably never will), I stalk the www or people who’ve been there and get myself a nice little recipe of something tasty from that country. Funnily, just buying a finished meal at an e.g. indian place doesn’t do anything to appease the travel bug, I have to cook it – probably because preventing the kitchen from burning down doesn’t leave me enough time to wallow in self-pity.
The chase after things like eischta (buffalo milk) or besan (chickpea flour) lifts my mood instantly – because, honestly, why should I wait until I can afford a ticket to Japan before I get decent okonomiyaki?
When I want to be in Japan, I make okonomiyaki and when I miss the UK, I bake scones. I therefore proudly present the first recipe in what is hopefully going to be another regular feature on our blog: ways and means to deal with the travel bug and itchy feet when traveling is out of question.
Have yourself a little tea time: Scones
Scones are easy to make and they always remind me of the traditional british tea time.
For your very own scones (10 – 12 scones), you’ll need:
300 g flour
6 tea spoons baking powder
40 g cold butter, cut into little cubes
250 ml milk
salt and (optional) one table spoon sugar
Preheat the oven to 220 °C. Sift the flour, the baking powder and a pinch of salt into a bowl. Knead in the butter with your fingertips until the mixture looks like coarse crumbles. If you want to, you can blend in the sugar to mellow the slight floury taste. Make a little hollow in the dough and pour in most of the milk. Then take a large round knife and mix the ingredients with cutting movments while spinning the bowl.
Don’t mix the dough to long or with to much force or you’ll get unhappy and very solid scones. The finished dough should feel a bit moist and sticky – if you think it’s to dry, pour in the rest of the milk.
Carefully shape a ball out of the dough with your hands (put some flour on them first) – don’t knead it, scone dough is very particular about the use of too much force. Roll it into a 2 cm thick slab and cut out round pieces (about 6 cm diameter) – I always use a water glass.
Put them on a baking tray lined with backing parchment and brush with some milk, then leave them in the oven for about 12 – 15 min until they have an even golden colour.
Once they are done, the real fun begins: Scones on themselves aren’t very exciting but you can eat them with pretty much everything. While the traditional way would be to eat them with clotted cream and strawberry jam (Cream Tea), scones can be happily enjoyed with everything runny enough to be spread on them: butter, marmelades, jams, lemon curd… you name it. And, of course, lots and lots of black tea.
How do you appease your travel bug?