The Harsh Truth About Scones
My Local Utah’s Content Team
If you are a Utah native, prepare yourself. You are about to learn a hard truth that is guaranteed to rock your world. What is sweet and fluffy, literally the size of your head, fried-until-golden, and served with creamy honey butter? I know your knee-jerk response will undoubtedly be to label this popular treat as a scone, but you could not be more wrong. Bear with me.
The first mention of the scone dates back to the 1500s. Beyond that, the history is a bit muddled until you get into the longstanding English tradition of tea and scones, which emerged in the 1840s thanks to the seventh Duchess of Bedford, Anna. Given that the United Kingdom was around long before the Americas, it is safe to say that this biscuit-like pastry that is often used as a vehicle to transport jam, clotted cream, and honey to your mouth has been stamped into history for far too long to be debated.
In case you have been living a lie up until this point in time and don’t know what a real scone is, I’ll explain. A traditional scone is a quickbread that is most similar to a biscuit and is often eaten with breakfast or afternoon tea. Scones are typically flour-based, can be sweet or savory, and are frequently embellished with dried fruits, cheeses, potatoes, or a variety of other items.
If I’ve successfully piqued your interest, there are a variety of locations here in Utah where you can experience the reality of traditional scones. The Grand America is well-known for its sophisticated take on Afternoon Tea, complete with a wide variety of exotic teas and cocoas, finger sandwiches, English scones and cream, and strawberries & cream chantilly.
Another option is Auntie Rae’s Dessert Island in Holladay, Utah. This quirky establishment specializes in children’s birthday parties but also does an exceptional job at offering a variety of tea parties for all age groups. The most traditional of their tea parties is the High Tea option. This option comes with your choice of tea, sandwiches, scones served with lemon curd or jam, a fruit and cheese plate, as well as a dessert. While you won’t get to experience the magic that is clotted cream, you will get your fill of delicious English scones!
In case you are more of a homebody or want to try your hand at making traditional scones at home, you’re in luck! Here is a recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction that is worth trying. My favorite add-ins include a bit of orange zest for some brightness and dried cranberries for a touch of sweetness!