“Late August, given heavy rain and sun
For a full week, the blackberries would ripen.” Seamus Heaney.
Happy September, everyone! The hedgerows are heaving with the ripening blackberries synonymous with this transitional time of year, just one of the reasons it’s my favourite. To celebrate the start of bramble season (expect more recipes with my favourite berry soon!) I wanted to share a brunch-ready recipe, perfect for slow, early Autumn mornings. These blackberry, saffron & honey drop scones (or pancakes to non-Scots/ Northerners) combine sharp blackberries, earthy saffron and aromatic honey for a delicious treat. They only need a handful of blackberries and the wee wild ones – freshly foraged of course – taste even better in this recipe. To make the drop scones, you will need:
175g plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
40g golden caster sugar
pinch of fine sea salt
1 small pinch of saffron strands
About 100ml milk
A few drops of vanilla extract
1 tbsp runny honey, plus extra for serving
1 or 2 handfuls of ripe blackberries
1 large knob of butter, plus extra for serving.
To make the pancake batter, place the flour, baking powder, sugar and salt into a large mixing bowl.
Crack in the egg, then add the saffron, milk, vanilla and honey. Use a whisk to combine fully. Lightly crush the blackberries and add them to the bowl, then stir through.
Melt the butter in a large non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. Pour most of the bubbling butter into the pancake batter and stir it through to combine thoroughly. Then, one by one, add four generous tablespoons of the batter to make four drop scones.
Cook for 1 – 2 minutes, until the undersides are golden brown, then flip each drop scone over and cook for another 1 – 2 minutes until golden too. While the next batches cook, you could pop the drop scones into a heat-proof bowl to keep warm in a low oven. Keep going until you’ve used up all the batter.
To serve, spread with butter and drizzle with more honey. What are you making to celebrate blackberry season?
Recipe via Gill Mellor’s Gather.