Thursday, 20 March 2014

Scones with Homemade Cultured Butter

I hate cream. Never liked the stuff so I am one of those weird people who much prefer butter on scones.  After eating some amazing cultured butter at The Royal Mail Hotel I thought i'd have a go at making it. When you make butter, you produce buttermilk, so scones followed.

After resting on the bench overnight
Making cultured butter is really simple. Just add a tablespoon of natural yoghurt (I used Chobani) to 300g pure thick cream. Make sure your cream is actually cream, not the stuff with added gelatine.
Leave at room temperature for 12 hours or overnight then put in the fridge to chill. I'm not sure if this is supposed to happen but my cream thickened considerably (see photo above).

Churn butter as per the EDC cookbook or until it looks like this:
One minute later and minus some buttermilk you have butter!
There should be a pool of buttermilk at the bottom of the bowl.

Tip off the buttermilk into a separate container and add about a cup of chilled water. Whizz it up again and strain off all the water. Squeeze and press the butter to extract as much water as possible. Fold through 1-2 tsp of sea salt flakes (to taste) and you have butter!

This butter tastes delicious however it does set very hard in the fridge so be sure to take it out at least an hour before use.
Cultured Butter

With my leftover buttermilk I decided to make scones. I pulled out Granny's old PWMU cookbook and found a recipe. Embarrassingly, the only scones I've made recently are lemonade scones so remembering the technique involved was an effort!

Scones (adapted from the PWMU cookbook 1964)

225g SR flour
1 pinch salt
1 tsp sugar
30g butter, chopped
3/4 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 220 degrees.
In a bowl, combine flour, salt and sugar and stir to combine.
Rub in butter until the mixture forms fine breadcrumbs.
Add in the buttermilk and cut with a knife until incorporated

Cutting in the buttermilk
Turn onto a floured bench top and lightly pat together to form into a ball. Try not to work the dough much at all. Flatten to 5 cm then cut out with a floured cutter.

Place in a greased and floured 20cm square cake tin, brush with milk and place in the oven for 15 minute or until browned.

Ready to bake
This recipe can be adapted and flavoured as necessary. I made a separate batch and added 1/2 cup chopped dates. Savoury additions could also be added.

So summon your inner granny and give scone making a try!

Sarah xx

Ready to eat!