mini cheddar & rosemary scones
Coming at you this week with some cheesy carbs to soak up all the Christmas alcohol you’re going to be consuming. These little mouthfuls of joy are perfect for the job. Mini, cheesy, savoury, ready to be lashed with butter, perfect with a big cuppa. Mmmm. I like to use cheddar in these scones, but if you have an alternative favourite hard, aged cheese feel free to use it instead!
Other options that would work well include red leicester, gruyère, comté or gouda. Just make sure it’s well aged for a good, strong flavour. Ahhh. Just writing about cheese is making me want to sneak into the fridge and have myself a nibble.
At Christmas time, everyone is mince pie mad. These are a nice alternative for people who aren’t so keen on sweet things, but want a little snack to accompany a cup of tea or glass of wine. Speaking of what to offer guests during the festive period, I was listening to episode 621 of The Splendid Table this week. Luisa Weiss from The Wednesday Chef was on the show talking about German baking and the traditional Christmas cookie plate. In Germany, it is considered polite to pass around a cookie plate, or bunter teller, when guests visit for afternoon coffee during the Advent run-up to Christmas. Traditionally, the plate should be adorned with a vast selection of different cookie varieties, some of which have to be prepared months in advance.
If this sounds a little too labour-intensive to you, then grate up some cheddar, get these in the oven, and offer your guests something a bit different this year! I would love to hear what festive snacking traditions you have, so feel free to leave a comment telling me what your family usually bakes at this time of year. And if you’re wondering what to offer your guests to drink, fear not! Mulled wine is on the blog next week, along with a few cocktail ideas to use up those bottles of port and brandy that you always have lying around at Christmas. Cheers!
- Serves: 10 mini scones
- Prep: 15 mins
- Cook: 12 mins
- 4 1/2 oz mature cheddar finely grated
- 3 tsp baking powder
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 stick butter cold, straight from the fridge
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 tsp finely chopped rosemary
- Preheat the oven to 350f convection or 400f regular bake. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Sift the flour, baking powder and salt into a food processor bowl. Add the chopped rosemary. Pulse a few times to combine.
- Add the cold butter and pulse a few more times until the mixture looks like sand. Pour the milk and water into the food processor and pulse again until the mixture looks like wet sand and is just starting to clump.
- Turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface and using your hands, press and form the dough into a flat circle about 1.5-2 inches tall.
- Use a metal scone/cookie cutter of your choice (I used a mini one but you can use whatever size you prefer) to cut as many circles out as possible. Re-roll the dough out again and repeat until all the dough is used up. Place the scones on the baking sheet and brush with milk.
- Bake in the middle of the oven for about 12 minutes, until a rich golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes then dig in while still warm! I like them best with some high quality salted butter.