These scones are soft, creamy and not overly sweet. Orange zest gives the dates a little freshness, but it is not essential.
2 cups of standard flour 3 level tsp of baking powder Pinch of salt 1 Tbsp sugar 1 large free-range egg, lightly beaten 50g (not quite 2 oz) butter, melted 250g (8½ oz) pot of sour cream Finely grated zest 1 orange 1 cup chopped pitted dates
1 Preheat oven to 220°C (425°F).
Sift flour, baking powder and salt together into a large bowl. Stir though sugar. Add egg, butter and sour cream and mix everything together. (I find it easier to do this in a food processor, then to transfer to a bowl). Mix in chopped dates and orange zest if using.
2 Cut off lumps of the dough, gently pat into shape without too much fiddling and place on a cold baking tray (sheet) lined with baking (parchment) paper.
3 Bake for about 12 minutes, until golden. Transfer to a rack to cool. Best served 1-2 hours after baking with lashings of butter.
Dust the dates with a little of the measured flour to stop them sticking to the knife when chopping them.
For speed and ease, whip the mixture in a food processor. Orange zest gives the dates a little freshness, but it is not essential.
To keep scones soft, wrap in a clean tea-towel. To revive left-over scones, heat for 10 seconds in a microwave.