Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Date Scones You Probably Wouldn't Take on a Date

Yes, so predictably after four or five posts I got bored of having a blog. But I am back. This is not the umbrella rant I've been planning; it is scones!
Date scones were a childhood staple and so in my mind scones almost always = date scones.
As usual my "recipe" is vague, at best, due to my inability to ever perfectly replicate any cooking or baking projects, partly because every time I cook something I falsely believe that I will remember what was in it for longer than about 20 minutes after eating it and so don't write it down. Despite this though, I am going to attempt to write this up as an actual recipe, with ingredients and steps!

Assume a "~" in front of most things, because my kitchen measuring tends to be haphazard.
So, ingredients:

  • 2 cups of plain, wholemeal flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp bi-carb
  • 2 generous TbSp tahini
  • 6 dates + 5-10 dates, depending on how lumpy you like your scones
  • 1/3 cup boiled water
  • 1/3 cup soy milk
  • pinch of salt


Pre-heat oven to 200°C- this is as hot as my oven actually will go, but if your oven is nicer, you can go up to 210-220.

In a small jug, cover the 6 dates with the boiling water, it's ok if you need more than 1/3 cup of water, but don't do more than you need to cover the dates. Leave the dates to soak for a while, or you can keep the water boiling (in a pot or microwave) for a minute or so to speed it up.

Meanwhile sift the flour, salt, baking powder and soda into a largish bowl.

Chop the 5-10 dates into small pieces, I cut them once lengthwise then twice across, making 6 pieces per date. I definitely used too many dates in these ones and they came out looking a bit special. So if you want a more uniform shape, go with less dates. Mix the chopped dates into the flour, making sure they all get good and floured so they don't stick together in a big lump.

Get your soaked dates and use a fork to mush it around a bit. Scoop out all the lumps (you could maybe use the mushy dates for something else, I put mine in the garden though), you should have a syrupy, datey liquid left. Top it up with soy milk until you have 2/3 cup of liquid.

Add the tahini to the flour and rub it in, as you would for pastry or biscuits or whatever else requires rubbing oily things into floury things.

Add the liquid to the flour-tahini crumb mix and knead it into a dough.If you are fancy and not using too many dates, roll out the dough to about 15mm and cut out circles. Otherwise just roll balls about 35mm in diameter and flatten to ~15mm. Spread the scones out on a lined baking tray, there should be about 12.

Bake for about 12 minutes.

Leave them on the tray and chuck a tea towel over them for 5 minutes to make them nice and soft.

Enjoy them sliced in half and covered with your favourite oil-based spread.

The end.