At Home Empress Scones

A few weeks ago I went to Victoria, BC with my mom and in addition to seeing the lovely gardens and the Royal BC Museum, we went to the Empress Hotel's High Tea. 


The courses of High Tea include finger sandwiches, scones with jam and clotted cream and sweets along with the Empress tea blend. I was so taken by the scones that once I got home, I decided to try and recreate them.


  • lbs & 4oz flour

  • ounces sugar

  • ounces butter (hard, cubed)

  • ounces baking powder

  • ounces golden raisins

  • 6 eggs

  • 16 ounces whipping cream

  • 1/8 teaspoon salt (pinch)

  • Rolling pin

  • Measuring tools

  • Large mixing bowl

  • Pastry brush or unused paint brush

As always, I prefer to do baking by weight as it is more accurate. I cannot emphasize how worthwhile the $25 for kitchen scale has been. I did not include the raisins in my first go-around but will definitely in the future.


  1. Crumb flour, butter, sugar, baking powder, and salt either by hand, with a fork or pastry cutter
  2. Add 5 of the eggs, separate the 6th and add the white to the batter. Reserve the 6th yolk for the egg wash.
  3. Stir in raisins
  4. Add cream and mix into a smooth dough, place in fridge for 20 minutes to firm up
  5. Lightly four a pastry board and rolling pin
  6. Roll out to half inch thickness
  7. Lightly flour a biscuit cutter (or the edge of a drinking glass) and cut out scones, re-rolling to use all the dough. If the dough gets too warm and hard to work with, you may need to put it back into the fridge for 10-15 minutes.
  8. I recommend putting the cut scones into the fridge or freezer for a few minutes before baking
  9. Whisk the reserved egg yolk with 1tbs (or less) of water and wash the top and sides of each scone using a pastry brush (or unused paint brush)
  10. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown on top
"Crumb" the dry ingredients with the butter by pushing them into the fat with finger, fork or pastry cutter

"Crumb" the dry ingredients with the butter by pushing them into the fat with finger, fork or pastry cutter

Final dough

Final dough

1/2" thick roll out

1/2" thick roll out

Egg wash

Egg wash


These are delicious, particularly with jam. I only wished that I could have made clotted cream to go with them but it turns out that's really difficult to make. Which is probably for the best, given that if it weren't I would eat only that for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It would be painful, but oh so worth it.


Let me know how your version of the Empress Scones turns out on Instagram with #bettybetatester. Coming soon: posts on canning fruit, tinting mason jars and a body butter roundup... so stay tuned!