Almost overnight, a 92-year-old Country Women’s Association veteran, Muriel Halsted, has become an internet sensation, after a cookery tutorial on her easy-peasy, four-ingredient scone recipe was viewed almost 5 million times (to date).
Filmed for the ABC in the kitchen of her family home – which fittingly just happens to be in the rural NSW town of Scone in the Upper Hunter Shire – Halsted reveals the simple secrets of her scones, which would usually be available at the Sydney Royal Easter Show. The CWA typically sells up to 50,000 of the baked treats at the popular annual event, which has been cancelled for 2020.
Halstead has been an enthusiastic member of the Country Women’s Association for more than 70 years, and while she’s long since lost count of the number of scones she has made for various CWA events over the years, she estimates that on average, she would have made about 160 litres of custard every year when her seven children were growing up.
Muriel’s fool-proof scone recipe
Five cups of self-raising flour
300ml of lemonade
300ml of cold full-fat cream
Full cream milk to brush
- Preheat an oven to 220 degrees.
- Sift the flour three times, then add a pinch of salt.
- In a bowl, make a depression in the flour, then slowly fold in the cream.
- Once combined, add lemonade and fold in until fully absorbed.
- Turn dough out onto a floured board, pat down to an even thickness.
- Cut dough into lengths, then divide into equal square portions.
- Brush with milk and lay out on a greased oven tray.
- Bake for ten minutes, rotating the tray once.