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Fabulously Fall-flavoured - these pumpkin scones are the perfect spiced teatime treat for the autumn!
My British Style Pumpkin Scones
British versus American scones - the never-ending debate! These two broad types of scones are very different beasts. I don't think its fair to say one is better than the other, but they do lend themselves better to different things.
I've discussed the differences between shaping UK and US scones as part of my American style recipe for Cherry Chocolate Scones.
If you're looking for a scone to serve with cream and spreads, you want a British style scone. These are usually lightly flavoured, well risen and great to slice in half for filling with your choice of accompaniments.
Ingredients for Pumpkin Scones
- Flour - either plain flour or all-purpose flour will work well in this recipe.
- Baking powder
- Unsalted butter - you are going to want this very well chilled
- Sugar - a mix of both brown sugar and granulated (caster) sugar
- Pumpkin puree
- Heavy cream or double cream - chilled
- Vanilla extract
- Spices: ground cinnamon, ground ginger and ground cloves.
- An egg for making a quick egg wash.
Baking Powder in Scone Recipe
This recipe calls for 5 teaspoons of baking powder, which you might feel sounds like a lot! One of the key traits to a British style scone is its rise.
You can use self-rising flour in this recipe, if you prefer. Self rising flour is simply flour that has been pre-processed with leavening agents and (in the US) a bit of salt. To substitute the self-rising flour - replace the all-purpose or plain flour with self-rising, remove 4 teaspoons of baking powder (retaining 1 teaspoon to use along with the self-rising flour) and leave out the salt.
Easy Scone Process
To make your scones, start by chilling your butter in the freezer for 30 minutes (see below for my tip on this). Meanwhile, preheat your oven and line baking trays with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
In a large mixing bowl, place your dry ingredients: your flour, baking powder, salt, spices and sugars. Give this a quick stir to mix everything together.
In a small jug, whisk together the pumpkin puree, the cream and the vanilla extract and set aside.
Next, grate the frozen butter into this and toss to combine. Then, create a well in the centre and add most of your liquid mixture.
You'll want to stop just short of adding it all in as you want to ensure you don't over add liquid to a pastry dough. So, add all but about 2 tablespoons.
Mix your dough together, first with a butter knife and then with your hands. You may find you need more liquid to bring the dough together, so add the remaining liquid a little bit at a time. If you need even more, add extra cream in small increments - mixing as you go to ensure that you don't add too much!
Once a dough has come together, tip out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead once or twice to a smooth dough. Pat this out gently until it is about 1 inch thick.
Now, using a circular cutter (or improvise with a drinking glass), cut 3 inch rounds. Do this by pressing straight down into the dough.
When you have cut out as many scones as possible, re-knead your leftover dough together and pat out again. Repeat the process of cutting the dough rounds until you have used up the dough. This recipe will make between 10 and 12 scones depending on thickness and size of cutter used.
Place the scones well spaced on the baking sheets and brush with egg wash made of 1 egg and 1 teaspoon of water whisked together.
Bake for about 12 minutes or until well risen and golden. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes before serving.
Top Tip: Grating Frozen Butter
So this trick is fabulous for pastry and any recipe requiring thoroughly chilled butter, such as scones. Rather than chopping up refrigerated butter, freeze the butter for about 30 minutes before using a cheese grater to shred this into your flour. Absolute game changer and ensures thoroughly chilled butter is incorporated into your dough.
Serving Suggestions for Pumpkin Scones
These pumpkin scones go well with typical scone toppings such as clotted cream and jam. But, for a truly special accompaniment to your tea time treat, I strongly recommend serving these with Candied Pecan Paste and cream or clotted cream.
Some jam serving suggestions:
FAQs for Pumpkin Scones
These pumpkin spice scones are best served fresh and warm. Leftovers from a tea party will last for a couple of days stored in an airtight container. They're best reheated since nothing quite beats a warm scone!
Yes! These pumpkin scones can be frozen. Bake them first and allow to cool completely. Then place in a freezer safe container for up to three months. When ready to use, defrost and warm in the oven at a lower setting (such as 325°F or 165C/145C Fan) for about 15 minutes until just warmed.
If you like this recipe, check out these other ideas for tea time:
- ½ cup unsalted butter chilled
- 2 cups plain flour or all purpose flour
- 5 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1½ teaspoon ground cinnamom
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- 2 tablespoon light brown (muscovado) sugar firmly packed
- 1 tablespoon caster sugar or superfine granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup pumpkin puree
- ⅓ cup heavy cream or double cream + extra if needed to bring dough together
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 egg for egg wash
- Begin by placing the butter in the freezer for about 30 minutes to ensure this is well chilled.
- Preheat the oven to 425°F (220C/200C Fan) and line baking trays with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, stir together the dry ingredients - the flour, baking powder, salt, spices and sugars.
- Meanwhile, in a small jug, whisk together the pumpkin puree, heavy cream and vanilla.
- Once the butter is well chilled, use a cheese grater to grate this into the mixing bowl of dry ingredients and toss through to distribute evenly.
- Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and add most of the whisked liquid (all but a couple of tablespoons). Use a knife to stir together bringing together a rough dough.
- Use your hands to knead the dough together into a ball. If it is particularly dry, add the remaining liquid a little bit at a time until it a workable dough. If it still feels too dry, you can add extra heavy cream.
- Once you have a dough, turn this out onto a lightly floured work surface, knead together once or twice until smooth and press out until it is about 1" thick.
- Use a round cookie cutter or a cup about 3" in diameter, press straight down into the dough. Once you have cut as many scones as possible from the dough, reknead any leftover into a ball and press out again, continuing to slice scones until you have used up the dough. This recipe results in between 10 and 12 scones dependent on the thickness and size of the scones.
- Place the scones on the prepared baking trays, spaced about 2" apart. Whisk the egg with about a teaspoon of water and brush the top of each scone before baking in the centre of the oven for about 12 minutes until risen and golden.
- Remove from the oven, allowing to cool for about 5 minutes on the tray. These are best served warm with cream and candied pecan paste or jam.