Buttermilk Raisin Scones

Raisin scones side view
One of the things I’ve struggled with since having Nora is trying to find time to do the things I enjoy. Some of my favorite activities, like singing in a chorus, travelling, or shopping are on hiatus for now because of COVID. Baking, however, is something I love doing and a lot of people have been getting into it during their time stuck at home. The problem with baking is that it’s not a quick process. Ingredients need to be measured precisely and there’s a lot of cleanup afterward as well. And when you have a baby who only naps for 30-45 minutes at a time during the day, it’s nearly impossible to bake something start to finish in that short amount of time.
17 Weeks Jumperoo
This little nugget is 4 months old today!
I can bake on the weekends when Tom was able to watch Nora. That works out pretty well, as long as we don’t have other bigger things to take care of. Like this past weekend we moved Nora into her own room, and trying to do that in the 1.5 hour time slots between her naps while also having to take care of her took up a lot of time, and when we were done, all I wanted to do was relax.
Raisin scones top view
There is a specialty food store down the street from me called Donnybrook Fair. It’s a quick 10 minute walk from my place, and when I was pregnant I would walk there to get lunch and some sort of baked good every couple of days. I continued this tradition with Nora, taking her with me for a quick excursion to get out of the apartment for a little while. One day they were sold out of pastries but they still had raisin scones for sale. I realized I had never had a scone before, and having recently watched the new season of Curb Your Enthusiasm, I decided to give them a try. Well, I was hooked. They reminded me of my Grandma’s Irish soda bread, which is apparently not really Irish. For a couple of weeks I would pick up a couple and have one with my coffee in the mornings after Nora went down for her nap around 10 AM.
Raisin scone with coffeeOne weekend I found a recipe from the BBC with a ridiculously good rating and decided to try making them. I substituted buttermilk for the regular milk the recipe called for and added raisins in an attempt to make them taste as close to possible as my Grandma’s soda bread. They were a success! I’ve made the recipe a couple of times now and I absolutely love them. I have to eat one as soon as they come out of the oven, but then I freeze the others and take out one per day to have with my coffee. This little bit of me-time has become something I look forward to each morning.
Today I managed to throw them together during one of Nora’s naps. The cleanup had to wait until a little later, but I was so happy to be able to do something I enjoy during the week, without needing Tom to run interference.
Below is the BBC’s recipe with my modifications, translated for my US readers.

Buttermilk Raisin Scones


  • 3 cups self-rising flour, plus more for dusting
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 6 tbsp butter, cut into cubes
  • 3 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 beaten egg, to glaze
  1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Put a baking sheet in the oven.
  2. Pour the 3 cups of self-rising flour into a large bowl with ¼ tsp salt and 1 tsp baking powder, then mix.
  3. Add 6 tbsp butter cubes, then rub in with your fingers until the mix looks like fine crumbs then stir in 3 tbsp sugar.
  4. Measure 3/4 cup buttermilk in a glass liquid measuring cup and heat in the microwave for about 30 secs until warm, but not hot.
  5. Add 1 tsp vanilla extract, then set aside for a moment.
  6. Make a well in the dry mix, then add the liquid and combine it quickly with a wooden spoon. If the mixture looks too dry, add an extra splash of buttermilk.
  7. Scatter some flour onto the work surface and tip the dough out. Dredge your hands with a little more flour, then fold the dough over 2-3 times until it’s a little smoother. Pat into a round about 1.5 inches deep.
  8. Take a 2 inch cutter (smooth-edged cutters tend to cut more cleanly, giving a better rise) and dip it into some flour. Plunge into the dough, then repeat until you have four scones. You may need to press what’s left of the dough back into a round to cut out another four.
  9. Brush the tops and sides with a beaten egg, then carefully place onto the hot baking tray.
  10. Bake for 10-12 mins until risen and golden on the top. Eat just warm or cold on the day of baking. If not consuming the day of baking, freeze and reheat later for best results.


  1. So glad you are back to your fabulous baking.
    I can see that this recipe is quite time consuming.
    Love the descriptive verbs!
    Happy 4th month birthday to your little nugget…such a cute picture!

  2. They sound so good. I will have to try. When you come home you will have to try the blueberry lavender scones from Chocolate Springs!

  3. They sound delicious. Keep up the cooking Molly! I love to cook too, but it is time consuming.
    Now that I am retired, I find it more enjoyable and less stressful.

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