There I sat, in the tourist café I’d had no intention of visiting. Pouring S a cup of tea.
At least they had soy milk.
I thought to myself, until I saw the look of hanger and despair in S’ beautiful grey eyes as she looked around the room full of people carelessly enjoying their pastries. I should have made the kids hold out for home. Better yet, I should have had the foresight to pack food. Amateur.
I knew I had to fix this. I had awoken a beast. A primordial beast whose hunger could only be satiated by light fluffy Irish Scones slathered in their obligatory toppings.
We wasted no time in returning home, and within 20 minutes of arrival I had a fresh batch of Vegan Irish Scones coming out of the oven, completely indistinguishable from “the real thing.”
Irish Scones Vs. American Scones
I do keep specifying Irish Scones for a reason, and a very good one.
Scones here in Ireland (and their British cousins) are completely different to scones in America. As a Baker I strongly feel that they are a different product altogether. Even to laypeople and casual pastry eaters like S the differences are obvious and gustable.
Irish Scones are light and fluffy, bready in texture. In fact, a Plain Scone in Ireland or Britain is almost identical to what we call biscuits in America. (Not to be confused with cookies, of course!)
For my-fellow-American’s reading this, if you have no idea what to expect of scones “the other side of the pond” picture Grandma’s Baking Powder Biscuits, slightly sweeter, loaded with raisins and you’ll get the idea.
After American Biscuits, Irish Scones are closer in texture to Muffins than they are to American Scones.
They are usually made with buttermilk, and eggs for the extra leavening power. Naturally, the Vegan Scone Recipe I share here has neither of those (not that anyone will notice).
Also, they are round.
Now, scones back home are different. American Scones are first and foremost flaky. They are far denser than their Irish counterparts. They are rich, indulgent, drier on the palate (but not in a bad way), slightly sweet but also salty.
There’s also a big difference when it comes to flavours. Plain Scones are common here, and they would be pretty rare to come across in American Scones. Of course there are Currant Scones, and the various Fresh Fruit scones but there are a wide and growing variety of flavours that are iconically “American Scone” to me that you just don’t see here, nor would they translate as well to the Irish scone base.
Eggs have no place in American scones, but they’re definitely not lacking in calories as cream is typically the sole liquid ingredient!
Also, they are triangular.
Vegan Scone Recipes
So there’s my brief explanation of the difference between American Scones and Irish Scones. I think S and I each have our own preference between the two. Maybe, just maybe, we’re biased by where we were reared… But I do think there is a time and place for both. And first, because S insists the recipe must be shared with the world, I now share my Vegan Irish Scone Recipe. Stay tuned, because I think it’s only fair to follow it up before too long with my American Vegan Scone Recipe!
Lazy Vegan Irish Scones
- 50g Sultanas (Optional)
- 200ml Soy Milk (or your preferred Dairy-Free Milk)
- 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
- 375g Plain Flour
- 60g Caster Sugar
- 2 teaspoons Baking Powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 100g Dairy-free Butter, melted
- Tip: (Optional) Soak the Sultanas in hot water or a cup of tea. This will keep them nice and moist and prevent them from burning in the oven!
- Combine Soymilk and Lemon Juice, set aside.
- Sift together Flour, Sugar, Baking Powder, and Salt.
- Stir in the Soy Milk, Dairy-Free Butter, and (optional) drained Sultanas.
- Bake at 200° Celsius (400° f) for 15 minutes or until golden.
Use this recipe as a vegan base scone recipe! Swap out the sultanas for other ingredients to try different flavours. Fresh or frozen fruits are ideal.