Nutri Natters

Rita’s blog for lovers of real food

Gluten-free scones

18th June 2020

It’s afternoon tea season so put on your pinny and start baking! Gluten-free scones usually fall to bits the moment you cut into them but this “no-crumble” recipe is an exception.  I have tested the recipe several times and declare these scones to be my best yet.  A secret ingredient gives structure to the dough usually lacking in gluten-free flour. The result is a firm but light scone crying out to be slathered in butter or your favourite jam.  They taste even better when eaten outside in the sun.

  “no-crumble scones”

Gluten-free fruit scones (makes 6-8)

225 g plain gluten-free flour (plus a little extra for rolling out the dough)

1.5 teaspoons of gluten-free baking powder

1/3 rd teaspoon of xanthan gum (the secret ingredient). Find it on the baking shelf in shops

50g of butter (or coconut oil for a vegan version)

1 tablespoon of Xylitol to add some sweeteness (optional)

60g of dried fruit e.g. sultanas

140 g of liquid e.g. almond milk or a mixture of half plain yoghurt (or kefir) and half water

What to do:

Set the oven to 200 degrees. Measure the flour, xanthan gum, baking powder and Xylitol (if using) into a large mixing bowl. Cut the butter into small pieces and rub into the flour between your fingers and thumb. The idea is to incorporate as much air as possible at this stage, hence the large bowl to allow you to lift your hands out of the bowl as you rub in the fat.  The resulting mixture should resemble breadcrumbs.  Mix in the Xylitol, if using.  Stir in the liquid using a knife, adding a little at a time. Gluten-free flour absorbs more liquid than other flours but you still need to be careful not to add too much or the dough becomes sticky.  Keep a little of the liquid back to glaze the scones before they go into the oven. Gather the dough together using your hands and turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead slightly and shape into a roundish shape about 2cm deep. Use a round scone cutter or a glass (5-6cm across)  to cut out the scones. Place on a greased baking tray; they can be placed quite close to each other. Keep re-shaping the dough and cutting rounds until it’s all used up.  Brush the scones with any remaining liquid and put in the oven for 15-20 minutes. They should be golden in colour as in the picture below. Leave to cool before splitting and serving with your favourite topping.  If there are any left, they’ll keep in an airtight tin for a few days and freeze well.

Variations: use chopped dates and walnut pieces instead of sultanas. For a savoury version use grated cheese, pesto, herbs or sun-dried tomatoes instead of dried fruit and leave out the Xylitol.

        Straight from the oven

Whether sweet or savoury, these scones are a traditional tea-time treat.  They taste even better outside on a sunny day!