Rosemary scones, autumn apples, and hibernation preparation

I woke up yesterday morning, bounding with that ‘it’s gonna be a great day’ kind of enthusiasm. It was a stunning, sunny, clear Edinburgh Saturday. The washing was out on the line before 8:30am, and there was a ‘winter’s coming’ touch of ground frost. I tied up some of my roses, and lopped off a nice bit of rosemary for the scones I’d been planning for a couple of days. Delia gave me an idea for a cheese scone which I used as a basic gist on quantities and to go a bit sexy with…

3 oz plain flour
3 oz self-raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon of mustard powder
1 oz soft butter, salted probably is best, at room temp
3oz Parmesan or Pecorino cheese, grated
A good-sized sprig of rosemary, washed, then finely chopped
1 large free range egg
3 tablespoons of milk
Grated pepper
A little bit extra of the cheese for the tops

Oven 220c

Sift all of the dry ingredients into a mixing bowl. Add the butter and rub in until it’s mixture is that crumbly texture. In a separate bowl, beat the egg together with the milk. Add the cheese and the rosemary to the dry mix stir in. Add in the milk/egg mix (leave a tiny bit for brushing the tops at the end) and start to blend the whole thing together into a dough. If you think it’s too wet and it going to stick to the rolling pin, add in a bit of flour. If it feels too dry, add in a wee bit extra milk.
Onto a floured counter-top, roll the dough out until it’s around an inch thick. Cut with a 3 inch round (or upturned wine glass works a treat, it seems) and place onto a greased baking sheet.
Before you put it into the oven, brush the tops with a bit of the egg mix, some cheese and grate a bit of black pepper.

Bake in the oven for 15 -18 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for a few minutes (or as long as you can wait) and slather with butter, devour.

Today, I was round at mum’s and we gratefully received in the autumn’s crop of our neighbour’s amazingly fruitful apple tree. Mum’s garage is now full of lovely apples which will hopefully last a few months. Some plum and apple crumble is definitely on its way!

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