Devon Cream Tea, Scones, and Pub Volunteerism. This is Great, Britain.

Finally, a place to speak the mother tongue.

After nearly a year of sputtering out attempts at foreign languages, we've come to a place of English fluency.

The place where our own American language originated. The place where people understand dry humor!

Curiosity killed the sheep...or it simply allowed the sheep to walk along eating grass.

It feels good.

Sarcasm doesn't translate well into other languages, and I am throwing out so many built-up jokes with the new people I meet here that I can only assume they are actually becoming afraid.

The beer garden at our current host's place, The Grampus Inn, an orca whale-themed pub ("grampus" meaning orca whale)

But speaking of feeling good, we've anchored ourselves in a cozy room atop a traditional British pub serving "real ales" and surprisingly good, local food.

Grub is provided to us straight from the menu in exchange for a smattering of work throughout the day and two days off per week.

Luckily, our host "over-staffed" with volunteers, so the workload is quite light, leaving plenty of time to explore the Devon coast (that lies a mere 400 yards distant) or to simply take leisure time (a personal favorite) catching up on reading, writing, and beating John in backgammon.

Care for a stroll?
A favorite walk with a taste of wildflowers

But what's the use in trying to tell you about a traditional British pub if you don't first understand one of the basic building blocks of traditional British food and drink?

Cream Tea.

I need three takers. Anybody?

It's not tea with cream in it, and it's not tea-flavored cream.

It's tea with scones (rhymes with "johns"!), clotted cream, strawberry (!) jam, sugar, a saucer of milk, and an extra pot of hot water in case you feel the need to dilute the brashness of black tea (and yes, you will be having black tea with that cream, because what other tea exists in England??).

The name doesn't really make sense, but it's British and it's a tradition and that's just what it is, ladies and gents.

Obviously the Brits are going to cut their scones circle-style, but as a crazy American you can cut any shape you please!
The first batch had a smoother top, probably because they were done by Bill the expert and he had added a bit more milk

Tired from your hike? In need of a pick-me-up? Or maybe just in the mood for a healthy snack based on flour, butter, and sugar?

Well, look no further than the British Cream Tea, starring a perfectly baked scone (which, I suppose, is the British version of what we might think of as a dense southern-style biscuit) and tea. Black tea. With milk and sugar.

It is a cute tradition, I can't deny it. These polite Brits politely duck into the pub, throw polite looks around and settle finally upon you with a smile, "Might ye have any cream tea?"

Why of course good sir, of course we have cream tea! And I know exactly how you want it because I know that you want it exactly how it has always been served according to British tradition. How simple, how orthodox!

Could you say no to this tradition? Really?

Health-wise, it's questionable . . . to say the least. I've warned you.

But damnit, it's tasty. And who wouldn't want to take a break for something called a "cream tea" even if the name doesn't fully make sense?

We were shown scone makery by a British master, Bill, our host here at the pub. The contents are amazingly simple and throwing it all together is surprisingly easy.

Just make a batch, put it in the oven, and while it cooks, make your second batch. Keep that system going for as many batches as you like, because these babies freeze for the long haul.

Which babies freeze? THESE babies freeze! Baby freezing!
(and yes, we broke the mold and made a star shaped scone, seen at the top of the scone pile. America!)

Cream teas for days . . . months . . . years!

Once you get a hold of your jam, clotted cream (ask a specialty store* or click that link), and black tea, all you need is a tasty scone. And fancy that, I have a recipe right here . . .

*I didn't tell you this, but conceivably you can substitute butter for clotted cream. But at least use a quality butter.

Authentic British Scones
800g sifted self-raising flour (or regular flour + 1 tbs baking powder)
200g margarine or butter, room temperature & cut into chunks
80g sugar
350ml (about 1 1/2 cup) or less milk

Preheat oven to 220 C or 400 F

Sift flour (this is not just to remove impurities, but to allow air to get in there for a better scone texture), then combine with sugar, baking powder, and a dash of salt. If using a stand mixer flat beater attachment, mix flour and sugar on low until combined, add butter and mix until combined, then slowly add milk until mixture just begins to stick to itself, but isn't too wet. If mixing by hand, combine flour and sugar, then mix in butter. Make a well in the center and mix in milk until dough sticks together. The dough will be relatively set and just past the "crumbly" stage.

Turn dough on to a lightly but evenly floured surface and press out (don't knead!) until you reach a thickness of about 3/4 inch. The goal is to just barely flatten the dough out, so use your hands and don't over-knead.

Use a deep cookie cutter to cut out your scones, working quickly because once the milk hits the self-raising flour, the "raising" component in the flour is activated, so you want to get these babies into the oven asap to get the full effect. Gently press out leftover dough and cut more scones out.

Once scones are placed on baking sheet, brush tops with a quick sweep of milk or beaten egg.

Bake for nine minutes, take out and flip pan around, and bake nine minutes more.
One bite of this and you're basically British
Ideally (once you're at pro-status), you'll make another batch of dough during the first nine minutes, and when you open the oven door to rotate the first batch, you throw in the second batch, and so on.

Bake each batch for 18 minutes total, or until barely golden on top.
Bill the scone master tests the texture
Have you ever seen a tray of scones this creepy?

Cream tea away!

(follow me by e-mail for more British adventures—yes, they do exist!)


  1. thanks for this share it post visit..Where you could visit to take part in the Firehouse Subs Guest Satisfaction Survey which will take your 5 to 10 minutes for completion and can win a $500.

    Firehouse Subs Guest Satisfaction Survey

  2. I have gone through your article and I must say, this is one of the best post I’ve ever read. Thank you so much for sharing. portable espresso coffee maker

  3. Especially for people with migraine young men, We have cases where migraine sufferers choose to shower when they feel their internet packages migraine is coming. You can try a 5-minute hot shower and then a 5-minute cold shower, which is believed to have distracting effects and increased blood transfusions.

  4. It's unwise to take migraine medication for fear of sudden onset. Migraine medications may not be as effective as advertised. Side effects of using migraine medications (Eg depression) often makes it harder for doctors to diagnose the underlying cause of migraine. Homepage

  5. Support and service

    Finally, when it comes to online services, you their explanation need to consider the level of customer service and support provided. What communication methods does the company offer? Do you offer email support only? Do you offer live chat or phone support? The appropriate Internet service provider will offer support by phone, email, and chat. However, they will also offer to troubleshoot - your service provider should be able to access the connection and network remotely and verify the problem from internet there. This ensures that you can get back up and running as quickly as possible when an outage occurs.

  6. If you don't know the perfect mannerism to do, it may be troublesome. Therefore, it is best for professionals to unadulterate the assistance on movement. helpful hints

  7. I've been completely mindful of the SMART media potential for transmitting hurtful EMF's (electric attractivecheck this link right here now frequencies) continually for the duration of the day. Indeed, EMF's are emanated from microwaves (on the off chance that they were running 24 hours every day) and our PDAs. However the bonuses SMART meter transmits at a lot more elevated level; conceivably up to multiple times higher than the click here to find out more EPA recompense and it runs click to find out more continually 24 hours every day.

  8. What happened next should give all dog trainers a reason to stop and wonder what's going on with the so-called "bouncers" in government agencies.official site




Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...