I was raised with both scones and biscuits. My mother was from Southeast Texas, and she grew up with biscuits. My dad was an Aussie, from Melbourne, Australia, and he grew up with scones. I enjoy both, but I have to say, I have a slight preference for scones over biscuits.
Scones and biscuits are close cousins of each other, but they are not the same. What is the difference you might ask. There are a few differences and they are subtle, but sometimes it is those subtleties that make all the difference. I challenge you to make them both and you be the judge. 🙂
1) Scones are made with cream and eggs. They’re sweeter, drier, and may contain fruit. You can make them either sweet or savory. Biscuits are typically made with buttermilk and no eggs. They’re flaky, soft, and traditionally not sweet. Well that explains a lot. My dad and I are (were) two peas in a pod, and both of us had/have a big sweet tooth, and we both prefer scones. But then, my mom had a big sweet tooth too, yet she preferred biscuits. HMMMM! Curious.
2) Scones are more dense and rich compared to the light and flaky consistency of American biscuits. Biscuits originate from the American South whereas scones originate from Scotland, gaining popularity in England during the 18th and 19th century. From there, they made their way to all the British colonies.
3) Southern biscuits have more butter and acidity (from the buttermilk), making them extra fluffy and flaky. While scones rely on richer, denser, ingredients like heavy cream and eggs to get a sturdy, yet crumbly, pastry.
I made some scones with shredded cheddar cheese and green onions to go with dinner. YUMMMY!!!! I love them this way. I used my basic scone recipe and then added the cheese and the green onions. They were so light and tender. They just melted in our mouths. I could have easily eaten the whole batch.
Cheesy Green Onion Scones
Preheat oven to 375* F or about 200* C.
2 cups flour
2 TBSP sugar
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup or 1 stick cold butter, cubed
2/3 cup milk
1 egg + 1 more for the egg wash
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/3 cup green onions, sliced very thin
Mix all the dry ingredients together then add the butter and mash with either your hands, or a pastry cutter until it all resembles course sand. Add the cheese and the green onion, mix together well, and create a well in the center.
Whisk the egg and milk together then pour into the center of the well. Carefully blend all the ingredients together and mix until just combined. DO NOT overmix or the scones will be tough.
Slightly flour your hands and shape the dough into a round ball. Pat into shape, then cut into wedges with a slightly floured knife.
Make an egg wash and brush the tops and the sides of each wedge then place in the hot oven. Bake for about 20-25 minutes or until the scones are lightly golden brown and just cooked through. Serve warm with butter.
I made these delicious scones for dinner, but you can serve them any time you like. They are perfect at any time of day. I promise you, you are going to love these. Larry was surprised I made them with cheese, since I am not a cheese fan, but the flavor of the cheese is very mild and very subtle. It’s just enough to make these scones really pop.
Stay safe and stay well. ‘Til next time.