If you are looking for a true taste of the British Isles, you can do no better than the humble scone. It is the mainstay of an afternoon tea, and also a rather lovely treat with a cup of tea on an afternoon. But there's a little bit of debate over two key aspects of scone appreciation.
First thing first, what exactly *is* a scone? Generally considered to be an obligatory part of the classic afternoon tea, it's a baked item, usually mostly savoury, although sometimes with a healthy smattering of raisins for one of your 5 a day! Eaten with jam - often strawberry - and a lovely dollop of clotted cream.
Clotted cream, you ask? Ah yes, now this is a thing all of its own. It was made by separating out the fat from the milk, and it's done by heating the milk over many hours so it separates, and then cooling slowly in shallow pans. Heavier than whipped cream, it is unsweetened and fantastically thick and unctuous.
It originates from the west of England, either from the counties of Devon or Cornwall. Wait, what? How are we not sure? Well this is where the debate starts to creep in.
DEVON VS CORNWALL
There is some debate about which of the two neighbour counties - pictured above in red - are actually the originators of the cream. Both places feel passionately that it is their baby, and claim the credit, as well as being entirely convinced their cream is superior. The debate, however, has a more tangible outcome.
When having your scones, there is one factor that is the dividing question - cream first, or jam? Do you put the thick cream on to the bread as a base, and then add the jam on top, or is that folly? Should the jam go first so that you can pile the cream on the top and have it as the first thing to hit your tastebuds?
Devonians believe the cream if the first to go on, with jam on top, whereas the Cornish believe the other way is the correct option. What do you prefer? I, personally, side with Devon and use the cream as the base, but it has been a fiery discussion over many an afternoon tea!
Maybe we should go to the top - Her Majesty the Queen. How does she do it? Jam first, according to one royal chef. Does that answer the debate? I highly doubt it!
ONCE IT'S SCONE, IT'S SCONE
This is a much wider debate. How do you pronounce 'scone'? Some pronounce it to rhyme with 'gone' and others to rhyme with 'cone'. How do you decide which one to use? That is a matter of personal choice! There are no geographic rules here, so you can fight for whichever you feel most passionately about.
So there you have it. The fierce dispute between warring factions, and you can decide which side of the debate you lie! Let me know what side you're on in the comments below.