I do love afternoon tea.
When I was growing up, on Sunday afternoons we regularly used to have what my parents dubbed “high tea” which took the place of a proper dinner. Dad regaled us with tales of afternoon teas he remembered from his boyhood in Malawi, and naturally I, with my over-active imagination, delighted in anything that involved pretending we lived somewhere else in another time. Cakes, crisps and sweets were usually involved, but more often than not there would be “party food” too, and sometimes Mum would make scones. The scone days were my favourite days! ;)
When we got Austar (what cable TV in Australia was called about 15 years ago, I don’t know what it’s called now!) my mum and I discovered a Kiwi cooking show hosted by Jo Seagar, who we just loved! In one episode, Jo made a batch of scones with a small pot of cream and lemonade. “I’m going to have to try that,” Mum said, taking down notes. When she pulled her next batch of scones from the oven we were amazed by them! They were fluffy, golden, and light as a feather. Mum always makes them that way now.
I really felt like scones on the weekend, but I didn't have any cream. I wondered if yoghurt would do the job just as well? See for yourself:
They were delicious and fruity, with the addition of a fruit yoghurt and jam. Scrumptious! And the "cream" on top is not cream, because as you know I didn't have any, but thick and delicious Total Greek Yoghurt! I can attest it is a delicious topping for scones, so creamy, with a lovely tang. You could add some vanilla extract to it if you wanted it to be sweeter.
But whatever you choose to put on top, these scones were absolutely delicious. I suggest serving with your choice of jam and cream (or thick yoghurt as I did), and of course your favourite tea!
Skinny rhubarb and strawberry scones
4 cups self-raising flour (or 4 cups plain flour, with 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder per cup of flour)
2 tbs strawberry jam
300 ml low fat rhubarb yoghurt
300 ml lemonade
Preheat oven to 220 C. Sift flour and salt into a bowl.
Add the jam, yoghurt and lemonade all at once and mix well - the dough will be fairly wet but don’t worry too much, just flour your bench well!
Turn out the dough and gently knead into a square shape about 2 cms (1") thick.
Cut into shapes and cook about 18 minutes until they are golden brown.
This made a “baker’s dozen” (13) large scones. I found that, fresh out of the oven, the bottoms of the scones were a bit chewy but that’s probably because of the sugars in the yoghurt, jam and lemonade. Perhaps they would be better made with soda water and natural yoghurt instead? I will keep experimenting. However, two days later the scones were not as chewy on the bottom and a bit softer. So it just depends on your taste. Perhaps I had too firm a hand with the dough as well. Either way they were delicious so I'm not complaining :P
You could use any yoghurt you like in place of the rhubarb yoghurt. You can also mix up the jam as well, such as:
Strawberry yoghurt and rhubarb jam
Coconut yoghurt and raspberry jam
Vanilla yoghurt and blackcurrant jam
The original recipe (I found a similar one online, Jo Seager's web site doesn't have the recipe on it) calls for cream, which you could of course also use.
My favourite bit was the lovely little blobs of jam in the scones, warm or cold - they were a lovely fruity surprise!
What's your favourite thing to have for afternoon tea? Do you find yoghurt a good substitute for cream in recipes?