Wooden Spoons Are For Scones, Not For Scotland

It’s finally happened: a Scotland six nations game that didn’t make me want to shrivel up and die! Let’s take that wooden spoon and make some victory scones. And then hope to god that someone else ends up with it.

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For victory scones, you will need:

350g self-raising flour
90g butter
3 tbsp sugar
180ml milk
1 egg
Big pinch of salt

  1. Preheat your oven to 220C. Stick a baking tray in the middle shelf to heat up. Put your butter, salt and flour in a large mixing bowl, and rub the mixture together with your fingertips until it looks like fine breadcrumbs. Don’t squash it, treat it gently, as though you’re touching Johnnie Beattie’s beautiful face.
  2. Warm up your milk in the microwave. Make a little well in the middle of your mixing bowl and pour the milk in. Stir until your mixture is much smoother than Scotland’s road to the prestigious second-from-bottom position.
  3. Dust a surface and your hands with flour and tip out your dough. If you have any lingering resentment about the English battering us at Murrayfield, now is the time to get it out. Smooth the dough between your hands and flatten it out to however thick you want your scones to be.photo
  4. Time to cut out your scones. If you are an actual functioning human being, you might own a round cutter, I just use a small tumbler. Cut out four, then roll your dough back into a ball, flatten it out and cut out another two. Feel free to make amusing shapes/voodoo dolls of Owen Farrell with the leftovers.
  5. Beat your egg. Again, it may be helpful to think of Owen Farrell while you do this. Brush the tops of your scones with egg, place them on your hot baking tray and put them in the oven for 10 minutes.
  6. Make a cup of tea. Chuckle gently at the glory of winning by 1 point with about 2 seconds to go.
  7. After 10 minutes, check on your scones. If they are as golden as Ritchie Gray’s hair, they’re ready.

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I like mine with butter, but if you want to be super-fancy, crack out the jam and clotted cream. Feel free to add a big handful of cheese to your mixture if you aren’t in a relationship with a fromage hating philistine. Or, if you are a philistine yourself, why not add sultanas, raisins or other ruined fruit?

Serve with an enormous cup of tea and the tears of your enemies.

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True Love Conquers All…?

Well, folks, it’s that time of year where mine and Niall’s love is pushed to the limits. That’s right. It’s time for the Scotland/Ireland Six Nations match.

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All morning, we laughed and joked and pretended that we were totally kidding with those thinly veiled death threats.

Such hostility.

Such hostility.

The battle lines were drawn.

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We were ready for the bloodbath to commence. Or, as ready as one can be for a bloodbath while snuggling under a duvet.

See, we live in one of these beautiful Bruntsfield flats, whose high ceilings, wooden floors and enormous windows are charming when you view the flat in the Summer. And then the Winter comes and you wonder, as you climb into bed with four pairs of socks and a hat on, how you were caught out by this again. Our kitchen does have the advantage of homing this guy:

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But on this occasion, was beaten out by the living room homing this guy:

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So we had no choice but to crack out the spare duvet and hide underneath.

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Hiding and avoiding eye contact with the enemy.

We were totally psyched.

Smudge being totally psyched. Or baffled. Difficult to tell, really.

Smudge being totally psyched. Or baffled. Difficult to tell, really.

And then the game started. After about 7 minutes of actually quite decent play, our team seemed to forget what sport they were playing. Instead of playing rugby, they suddenly started showing some serious promise in the Scottish national sport of Fannying About (not to be confused with English national sport of Being A Fanny).

What followed was a comprehensive masterclass in Fannying About. Seriously, any of you amateur Fanny Abouters looking to turn pro should take a look, there was some pretty inspiring stuff in there.

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Not the greatest start for Scotland, I’ll admit. But at least the tension of Scotland/Ireland is over and Niall and I can once again present a united front, dedicated to the hope that England will get well and truly trounced.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a consolatory cup of tea waiting. He’s not a bad lad, for an Irishman.