In the first of a regular baking series, Borough Market demo chef and Great British Bake Off finalist Beca Lyne-Pirkis tells us why a savoury scone is the perfect autumn snack
Words: Beca Lyne-Pirkis
I often think that cool September mornings are nature’s way of waking us up out of our summer laziness and easing us into autumn gently. That invigorating freshness on your face as you leave the house to start your day makes you quickly draw breath and sets you up for whatever the day throws your way.
With coolness comes the yearning for food that comforts and for me this means dough, which seems to have featured heavily in our diet over the last few weeks already. From home baked barley and rye bread to apple and blackberry tarts, bread and pastry are both staples in my meal planning as the weather gets cooler—especially pastry, as it’s handy to turn leftovers into a pie or a quick quiche for lunches and light suppers.
I vividly remember teaching myself how to make a quiche when I was around 10. I’d decided on the bus journey home from school that I wanted to make something for us to have for supper, so I dug out my trusty children’s cookbook and found a simple recipe for quiche lorraine. I checked what we had in the fridge and was pleased to find that all the ingredients needed were there ready and waiting.
Clumsily lining the tin
I started with the pastry, something I’d made several times with the help of my parents or grandmothers. I remember rolling it out and clumsily lining the tin and getting annoyed at myself for having to patch up the odd hole, which never usually happened when I made it with my grandmothers.
Tin lined, I moved on to the filling. Now, quiche lorraine is a simple recipe of ham or bacon, cheese, eggs and milk or cream. Eggs whisked with milk and cheese grated, all I had left to do was fry the bacon. Well, I burnt the bacon. Total disaster. However, I picked out the best bits and persevered. I popped the quiche into the oven just as my mam got home from work.
I remember telling her that I’d made supper and stood grinning from ear to ear like a clown feeling very pleased with myself. Mam took one look at the kitchen, which was liberally covered in flour, and begrudgingly smiled.
A bored lunchbox
Alongside quiches, tarts and pies there are scones; another firm favourite of mine, as they’re quick to make and can be made plain, sweet or savoury. They’re a regular on the afternoon tea menu circuit and delicious with cream and jam, but a savoury scone will breathe life into a bored lunchbox and will liven up a bowl of vegetable soup like a conga at a wedding party. Made using whatever you fancy, they’re a great snack to grab if you’re short on time and a delicious after school treat to keep the kiddos going until supper.
Next month I will be back in the Demo Kitchen at Borough Market to celebrate National Baking Week. Expect a cloud of icing sugar and plenty of delicious sweet and savoury recipes to please the eyes and tastebuds.