Mrs.Patmore loves to make this wonderful traditional scone, cooked just the way Robert Crawley, Earl of Grantham, and his family like them.
Serve these fine scones with strawberry jam or a berry butter. If you like, add no more than 1/2 cup choppedplumped dried apricots, whole raisins, chopped crystallized ginger or semisweet chocolate morsels to the dough just before kneading. Fresh blueberries, dried cranberries, or chopped walnuts or pecans make this a gem.
Mrs.Patmores Tea Time Scones
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut
3/4 cup milk
Preheat an oven to 450°F. Lightly grease a baking sheet with solid vegetable shortening.
In a food processor, combine the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, sugar and salt. Pulse to combine. Add the butter and use on-off pulses until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Transfer to a bowl.
Alternatively, in a bowl, stir together the dry ingredients. Then, using a pastry blender, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour in the milk. Using a fork, mix together until a soft elastic dough forms.
Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and knead 5 or 6 times until the dough is smooth. Roll out about 3/4 inch thick. Using a scallop-edged cookie cutter 3 inches in diameter, cut out rounds. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet.
Bake the scones until they rise and are golden brown on top, about 10 minutes. Serve hot.
Makes 8 to 10 scones.