Made for sharing: High tea with lemon-hibscus scones

These lemony scones are glazed with vivid fuchsia icing. The beautiful natural colour comes from dried hibiscus flowers, which you can buy online (alternatively, you can use a hibiscus tea bag). Choose any fresh fruit you love for this board. A combination of a few different fruits will look the most visually striking.

lemon hibscus scones
Erin Scott

SERVES 4-8

LEMON SCONES
50g granulated sugar
1  lemon, finely grated zest
250g plain flour
30g wholemeal plain flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
115g unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 8  pieces
180ml very-cold double cream, plus more as needed
1  tsp vanilla extract

HIBISCUS GLAZE
1 lemon, juice
1  tbsp dried hibiscus flowers (or 1  hibiscus tea bag)
125g icing sugar, sifted

BARELY WHIPPED CREAM
240ml double cream
2  tsp icing sugar
1  tsp vanilla extract

TO SERVE
1 jar of berry jam
Fresh stone fruit (such as cherries, nectarines, and apricots)

  1. Bake the scones. Preheat oven to 200C, fan 180C, gas 6. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a small bowl, combine the granulated sugar and the finely grated zest of the lemon. Using your fingers, rub the zest into the sugar until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together both flours, the baking powder, salt, and bicarbonate of soda. Add the lemony sugar to the bowl and stir to combine. Add the butter and, using your fingertips, rub the butter into the mixture until there are no butter pieces larger than a pea. Pour in the cream and vanilla. Stir with a wooden spoon to form a crumbly dough. If the dough is too floury and won’t come together, add more cream 1  tbsp at a time, until it just barely holds together.
  3. Turn the dough out onto an unfloured surface and knead quickly to bring it completely together. Fold it in half onto itself, as if you were closing a book, then pat and shape the dough into a circle that is 2.5cm thick. Using a large knife, cut the dough into 8 triangles and transfer them to the prepared baking sheet. Bake until lightly browned around the bottom edges, 15-20  minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  4. Make the glaze. Squeeze the juice from the zested lemon into a small saucepan. Add the hibiscus flowers (or the tea bag, if using) and warm gently over medium heat until the flowers impart their fuchsia colour. Once the lemon juice is hot, remove the pan from the heat and let the hibiscus steep until the colour is pronounced; about 5  minutes should do the trick. Strain into a small bowl and discard the flowers (or tea bag).
  5. In another small bowl, combine the icing sugar and salt. Stir 1  tbsp of the hibiscus-infused lemon juice into the sugar. Gradually add more juice, 1  tsp at a time, until the glaze is thick but pourable. Drizzle the glaze over the cooled scones or serve it in a bowl alongside.
  6. Whip the cream. In a medium bowl, whisk the cream, icing sugar, and vanilla by hand or using electric beaters until the cream thickens and holds very soft, floppy peaks.
  7. To assemble, transfer the barely whipped cream to a serving bowl and place it on a platter next to the scones. Spoon the berry jam into a small serving bowl and set it alongside. Arrange the fresh fruit around the other components.

Now buy the book

boards, platters, platesOur recipes are from Boards, Platters, Plates by Maria Zizka, published by Artisan Books, price £15.99. To order a copy for £13.59 until 16 May call 020 3308 9193 or go to mailshop.co.uk/books. Free p&p on orders over £20.

 

 

Photographs: Erin Scott. © Maria Zizka 2021