It has been a while since we had a book group book with quite as many references to food as appear in Rebecca West's The Fountain Overflows (which we're talking about on Cornflower Books today), so there has been lots to choose from for our virtual afternoon tea, and I could have offered you a groaning board: doughnuts, golden-crusted pies, muffins and crumpets, lardy cake, cherry cake, cakes with buttercream, brandy snaps, and so on and so on.
I've chosen to make oatmeal scones, which Rose and her mother ate hot and spread with butter and golden syrup, at Constance's house at tea which also featured "Scotch bun, the rich cake in a pastry case which is known as 'black death' ", (N.B. Rose notes, "It was good that she [Constance] was Scottish, it meant that she gave us a good tea", and she compares Edinburgh bakeries most favourably to London ones!). First of all I used this recipe (but substituting butter for margarine), and I found the dough very soft and sticky indeed, so cutting out was difficult, and they were more than done in 10 minutes rather than the 15 the recipe indicated.
Then I read 'How to make the perfect scone' and decided to make another batch this morning, tweaking things a bit with 00 flour, bicarbonate of soda and cream of tartar, and less milk than before. This dough was easier to handle but the scones have spread more than the first lot so aren't as well-risen as I'd hoped for, but the texture and flavour is good, the oatmeal gives some interest, and I've had no complaints thus far (I may just revert to this recipe, though).