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Betty Jo's Valentines

  • Rooster
    These are valentines from my mother's childhood scrapbook, "Betty Jo" Halloran. They were sent and received, from her siblings, grandparents, cousins, and friends, from 1929 to 1938, in Fargo, North Dakota, and Minneapolis/St. Paul. Please enjoy them with my love. xoxo, Susie

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November 07, 2007


Crystal Kile

Buttermilk is good. Try this one that flies on baking powder. It makes for a particularly good cheese scone, for it is already so light!!

Lily! Nigella!

The Missing Link Between the Scone and the Fluffy Southern US Biscuit

from Nigella's _How to be a Domestic Goddess_...

Attributed to "Lily"

3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp baking soda
4 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1/4 cup cold unsalted butter, diced
2 tbsp veggie shortening in teaspooned lumps
1 1/3 cups milk
1 large egg, beaten (for egg-wash)
2 1/2 crinkle-edged round cutter
1 baking pan, lightly greased [or not]

Oven to 425 F.

Sift flour, salt, baking soda, and cream of tartar into a large bowl. Rub in the fats until the mixture goes like damp sand. Add the milk all at once, mix briefly -- briefly being the operative word -- and then turn out onto a floured surface and knead lightly to form a dough.

Roll out to about 1 to 1 1/4 inch thickness. Dip the cutter into some flour, then stamp out at least 10 scones. You'll get 12 in al from this, but may need to re-roll for the last 2. Place on the baking sheet very close together. The ideas is that they bulge and stick together during cooking. Then brush the tops with an egg wash. Put in oven and cook 10 mins or until risen and golden.

ALways eat freshly baked, preferably still warm from the oven, with clotted cream and jam or, my favorite Thunder and Lightning -- clotted cream and molasses.


Add 3 oz raisins or golden raisins for fruit scones, or use the same amount of dried sour cherries w/ or w/o the finely grated zest of 1/2 an orange. To make cheese scones, add 3 oz sharp cheddar, grated.

Susie Bright

Wow, that sounds great. Could you come over RIGHT NOW and make these?

minstrel boy

susie darling! you are hitting me where i live. i think it's a fairly natural reaction to a life playing music on the road that when i'm home i get all behind home made food. if you're going to make the scones, why stint and go storebought with the lemon curd? and here, are some simple variations on that same theme using other fruits (p.s. the passion fruit curd rocks out loud)

Crystal Kile

Ooops. I meant "flies on cream of tartar"!

An excessive amount of cream of tartar.

And it's nice to cut them out with a crinkle-edged heart-shaped cutter.


World's best scones - and I can say this because they are not my recipe, they're my great-aunt's recipe, or (as she would have said) her mother's recipe:

Aunt Margaret's Scones:

4 ounces self-raising flour (all-purpose flour with the right amount of baking powder)
a pinch salt
4 ounces butter
1 egg
water or milk to mix

Rub the flour into the butter until you have fine crumbs. Beat in an egg. Add just enough water to make a round of very moist soft dough.

Cut into pie-shaped pieces and slide onto an oiled/floured baking tray.

Bake in a hot oven for ten-fifteen minutes - take out when the flour on the tray is browned, and the scones will be done.

Eat that day, or wait till cool and freeze immediately.

The standard variation: Cheese scones: add a teaspoon of dry yellow mustard to the flour, and finely grate some strong cheddar (about an ounce) which you mix in after working in the butter.


These scones are different from most recipes because the mix is very wet. You not only don't want to roll them out, you couldn't. They are delicious - best eaten still warm from the oven, but perfectly good if they're frozen as soon as they're cool and then reheated. And they're flexible - the cheese scones version is the only variation my great-aunt taught me (adding mustard to the cheese to make it cheesier is an old family trick) but I've used different kinds of flour, chopped fresh parsley and used garlic butter instead of plain... etc.

Susie Bright

You know, I am spoiled rotten on the lemon curd front, because we live close by to a legendary bakery, Gayles, which makes their own lemon curt fresh every day, and has created quite a band of addicts like me. You know what I liked to dip in lemon curd? Graham crackers! Pass the box, please!

Thanks for these intriguing scone recipes, too.

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