A griddle is only a large flat iron plate, so a heavy flat-bottomed frying pan will do the job just as well. Correct temperature rather than utensil is the key to success. If too hot, the scones will burn before the middle is done; if too cool, the batter will not rise enough and the result will be leaden. As with pancakes, it usually takes a few goes before you get it right. Always test the temperature by putting on one small spoonful of batter first. The best way is to put a pan on a moderate heat for 2–3 minutes, then turn it right down. Leave to allow the pan surface heat to stabilize before testing, wiping the base first with oiled paper.
Sieve the flour into a bowl with the baking powder, sugar and salt. Make a well in the middle, put in the egg then the milk and whisk to a thick batter, adding a little more milk if the mixture is too dry (you want the consistency of double cream). Leave to stand for 30 minutes at room temperature before use.
Preheat the frying pan and test, cooking one scone, then cook the rest in batches. One tablespoon of batter will make 1 scone. As the bottom of the scones cook, after about 2 minutes, bubbles will come to the surface. Turn them and cook the other side for 2 minutes.
Keep the scones warm, wrapped in a cloth in a low oven until all are done. Eat while still warm, with butter and jam.
© 1998 Alastair Little. All rights reserved.