My Buttermilk Scones with Orange Icing recipe is light, airy, and subtly sweetened with orange zest and dried currents in a sweet pastry similar to buttermilk biscuits. They’re about a thousand times better fresh out of the oven, rather than the scones at the coffee shop that have been sitting in the display case for hours.
Scones at High Tea
The Savoy Hotel in London is famous for its High Tea and their scone recipe is legendary. I love the flavor of orange zest and dried currants, so I flavor my scones the same, although my recipe is a lot less fussy, then again, I’m not cooking at the Savoy! I make my scones less like scones, and more like southern buttermilk biscuits, I just like the texture better. The scone at high tea is traditionally round, personally, I think triangle-shaped scones are more efficient and there is less wasted dough, but what do I know? Haha.
Scones with Devonshire Cream
Authentic Devonshire Cream or Clotted cream, I’ve heard it described as “either the creamiest butter you’ve ever had or the butteriest cream you’ve ever had”. Impossible thick, creamy and luxurious, on fresh Scones, with Roasted Strawberries, or Blueberry Compote, it’s quite possibly the best thing you’ve ever had in your life. No exaggeration, haha.
How to Pronounce Scone
Funnily enough, I get asked how to pronounce scones quite often. In U.S. English, the pronunciation of ‘scone’ rhymes with ‘tone’. However, the scone originated somewhere in the United Kingdom. Therefore, depending on the region of England, Ireland, Wales, or Scotland, the pronounceiation of ‘scone’ could rhyme with either ‘gone’ like ‘skawn’ or ‘tone’ like ‘skown’. My family comes from Northern England in Lancashire, so we pronounce scone as ‘skawn’.
Forget to buy Buttermilk?
Buttermilk is one of those things we do not have in the refrigerator unless we have planned on it well in advance. Luckily, I have a very simple Buttermilk Substitute recipe for just such an occasion. Because you can’t make my Scones with Orange Icing without it! Or for that matter, buttermilk pancakes, buttermilk biscuit, Cornbread recipe or My Mom’s Cornbread Dressing, etc. etc.
This is my Buttermilk Scones with Orange Icing recipe:
Buttermilk Scones with Orange Icing
- 2 1/2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
- 1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
- 1/4 Teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1/4 Cup Granulated Sugar
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- 8 Tablespoon Unsalted Butter Cold, 1/4-inch cubes
- 1 Egg
- 1 Egg Yolk
- 3/4 Cup Currants
- 1 Orange Zest only
- 3/4 Cup Buttermilk
- 1 Egg Beaten
- 1 Tablespoon Buttermilk
- 3/4 Cup Powdered Sugar (Confectioners sugar)
- 2-3 Tablespoons Orange Juice
- Preheat the oven to 400F
- Add dry ingredients to a bowl
- Cut in the butter until the bits are the size of peas
- Add the dried fruit and orange zest
- Whisk together the eggs and buttermilk then add them to the dry mixture, careful not to overwork the dough, the dough should be consistent in texture, not too dry or too wet, add more buttermilk if too dry
- Turn the dough out onto a floured surface, roll out to an approximate 1-inch thickness
- Cut into triangle shapes or use a round cutter, the shape is up to you, if making smaller bite-size scones, adjust baking time as needed
- Place the scones onto a parchment or silicone mat lined sheet pan
- Beat one egg with a 1 tablespoon of buttermilk for an egg wash, Brush the tops of the scones with the egg wash
- Bake for approximately 14-16 minutes until browned and not moist on the sides.
- Combine the powdered sugar and orange juice in a bowl, stir to combine
- Drizzle about a teaspoon over each scone, best served warm and fresh