5. Soda Scones


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Makes


Appears in

Scottish Baking

Scottish Baking

By Sue Lawrence

Published 2016

  • About

Traditionally baked on a girdle, they can also be baked in the oven (200C/400F/Gas 6 for 20–25 minutes). They are delicious split apart and smeared with butter and jam; or they are also wonderful with a hearty beef stew.


  • 250 g/9 oz self-raising flour
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 2 tsp golden caster sugar
  • 1 medium free-range egg
  • 25 g/1 oz butter, melted, cooled slightly
  • 200 ml/7 fl oz buttermilk (or approx. 175 ml/6 fl oz milk)


First put on your girdle (or heavy frying pan) to heat to medium hot, smearing with a little oil.

Sift the flour and soda into a bowl with half a teaspoon of salt and the sugar. Make a well in the centre and add the egg, melted butter and enough buttermilk (or milk) to combine to a soft dough. Do not overwork.

Tip onto a floured board and, using floured hands (it is sticky) shape without kneading into a round about 22cm/8½in diameter. (It should be about 2cm/¾in thick). Using a floured knife, cut into quarters or sixths. Dust lightly with flour and transfer carefully to the hot girdle.

Cook for about 5 minutes (by which time they will have risen and have formed a fabulous brown crust underneath) then carefully flip each over. Continue to cook until done, on a lower heat. They are done when you press down lightly and there is no liquid oozing out of the sides; at this point the edges will be dry. It might take 15 minutes altogether, about 5 minutes for the first side and 8–10 minutes on the other. Transfer to a wire rack and serve warm.