Monday, July 14, 2014

The Queen's Scones

One of my favorite new books is called Letters of Note and it's filled with interesting letters and their context. 

One of the letters covered in the book is from HRH Queen Elizabeth of England to then United States President Dwight D. Eisenhower sent January 24th, 1960. It was send only five years after she became queen. Here's the text of the letter:

Dear Mr President, 
Seeing a picture of you in today’s newspaper standing in front of a barbecue grilling quail, reminded me that I had never sent you the recipe of the drop scones which I promised you at Balmoral. 
I now hasten to do so, and I do hope you will find them successful. Though the quantities are for 16 people, when there are fewer, I generally put in less flour and milk, but use the other ingredients as stated. I have also tried using golden syrup or treacle instead of only sugar and that can be very good, too. I think the mixture needs a great deal of beating while making, and shouldn’t stand about too long before cooking.  
We have followed with intense interest and much admiration your tremendous journey to so many countries, but feel we shall never again be able to claim that we are being made to do too much on our future tours! 
We remember with such pleasure your visit to Balmoral, and I hope the photograph will be a reminder of the very happy day you spent with us.
With all good wishes to you and Mrs Eisenhower.  

Yours sincerely

Elizabeth R

As you can see the letter includes the Queen's recipe for scones. You can see a photo of the actual letter hereOur intrepid baker, Janet, in the Portland office decided to test out the queen's scones to see if they were:

1) Easy to make

2) Tasty 
3) Worth the effort

Here's the recipe in case you would like to make it yourself:

Here are the ingredients that Janet used (plus blueberries that she added that weren't in the original recipe):

The batter was easy to make. 

The scones on the griddle...

Getting a beautiful golden brown

And we present HRH, The Queen's Scones:

Janet thought the scones were relatively easy to make and she liked the blueberry addition, which was not approved by the Queen. The scones were super tasty. They were moist enough that they didn't need clotted cream and the fresh fruit made a great accompaniment. The recipe did make a big batch as the queen warned in her letter. Janet plans to make them again, which is high praise...


  1. These look great, thanks for sharing!

  2. Janet in the Portland OfficeJuly 14, 2014 at 1:09 PM

    These are more like a thick fluffy pancake than what we normally think of as afternoon tea scones that are flaky and biscuit like. They were wonderful for a Sunday breakfast and thick enough for the leftovers to be cut in half and toasted for snacks later. God Save the Queen :-)

  3. How cool. I didn't know you could do scones in a pan and not the oven.