I am going to be be politically, geographically and diplomatically correct here by stating that IT REALLY DOESN’T MATTER how you say the word.
What matters is the taste and texture of the squat cylindrical lump of tasty dough-stuff.
This is really where I get a bit snobby. I am not Mary Berry (or Paul Hollywood), and I do not profess to be a professional baker (but I do LOVE baking), but the number of scones I have eaten has given me a good basis for judging quality.
Texture is extremely important. A scone is a complex combination of opposites:
- Dense, but light
- Crumbly, but together
- Moist, but dry
Obtaining this level of perfection isn’t actually too difficult. There are so many different recipes out there and they are all “relatively” similar in principal/ingredients.
I have made scones before (it was the Queen’s birthday after all), and I was actually quite impressed with how they turned out. I was baking for quite a few people, and it was only supposed to be a light snack, so I made mini scones instead of normal sized ones, but everything aside from baking time was the same.
Things I learned while researching my scone recipe:
- Don’t overwork the dough (handle it as little as possible before putting it in the oven)
- It doesn’t rise like a cake, so thickness is key
- Dust the cutter with some flour to aid in removing the circular dough when cut out
- Brush with egg or milk on the top (not oil or butter)
- Remember to pre-heat your oven appropriately
- GIVE IT A GO – IT ISN’T AS HARD AS YOU THINK!
Often times, taste comes second to texture because we rarely eat scones plain. If you are me (and I seriously hope there are lots of you out there) the scone is sometimes masked by the copious amounts of clotted cream and jam on the top. For this reason, scones are not meant to be entirely sweet to taste; they merely hold their super important purpose as a vessel in which to carry sweet toppings (i.e. the clotted cream and jam).
I will discuss the intricacies of clotted cream and jam in other posts (so keep a look out) but they play a massive role in the success of an Afternoon Tea.
All in all, the point of this post is so try and steer away from the argument of pronunciation, and to instead enlighten you to the inner delights of what makes a scone a scone (or sc-oh-ne) so that you can start judging them for yourself!