When I first moved to NZ, I wanted to get to know other crafty gals- or rather I’d met some crafty gals and wanted to start getting to know them better. So I started hosting monthly crafternoon teas. They were great for making my new friendships deeper, having baked goods to eat didn’t hurt, and I got a LOT of crafting done.
Since this is a year where I plan to do a LOT of crafting, and since I’m once again in a new city with women I’d like to know better and better, I plan to organise some more crafternoons. So I thought I’d share a few tips on how to do it.
It’s really simple:
You pick an afternoon (or an evening). Ideally this is a weekend, so people can relax a bit more and don’t have to carry big projects to work with them.
You invite friends who like to make things (or who are keen to give it a try- see below) to come and join you, bringing a project they’re working on and some baking/other food to share.
You make sure you have plenty of tea/coffee/other nice drinks on hand.
You gather, you craft, you eat, and you talk.
But my friends don’t craft/some of my friends want to come but not make anything
In the first case: Why not pick a project that interests you from, say, pinterest, that doesn’t look too difficult (if it turns out to be tricksy that actually can add to the fun), and go in together on the materials to give it a try?
In the second case, the obvious question is: Are they still bringing some food to share? If yes (and it should be) then I say the more the merrier. Just don’t let them nick all the cinnamon buns while you’re finishing another row of knitting.
Because I promised you recipes, yes? In the past, I’ve made ooey gooey cinnamon buns for crafternoon, and my goodness they’re delicious. BUT, I recently tried out a recipe which proved SO tasty and SO damn easy that I had to share it with you all. I give you… lemonade scones!
4 cups Self Raising Flour
300ml cream (liquid)
That’s it. You read that right. Three ingredients. I told you this was damn easy, didn’t I? Also, if you happen to only be able to find bottles of lemonade, but have a 300ml bottle of cream, use the bottle the cream came in (once you’ve poured it into the bowl) to measure out the lemonade. YOU’RE WELCOME.
Pre-heat the oven to 180 if fan-assisted or 200 if normal.
Optional: If using a gas oven, engage in mild panic about whether the damn thing has actually lit and sniff the air around the open oven door compulsively for several minutes, worrying that maybe the blue flames don’t go all the way to the back.
Mix the three ingredients together quickly with a knife.
In a bowl.
I realise I’m stating the obvious, this is just in case you’re one of those people who reads the warnings on peanut labels and genuinely things “oh, thanks for the warning!”.
If a little wet, add a bit more flour. (I found with this recipe that I needed about 1/4 cup more, but just look for it to be quite dry but still holding together nicely).
Spread the mixture to an inch thick on a baking tray, and cut into shape. Or if, like me, you don’t have a good spreading knife, tear scone-sized bits off the ball of dough, flatten them out to about an inch and put them on the baking sheet.
Place on a floured tray or baking sheet and bake in pre heated oven in for about 15 minutes, until risen and golden brown.
Enjoy with jam and beaten cream. And by ‘enjoy’ I mean nom as many as you can until you’re out of cream.
Also don’t do what I did and accidentally over-beat the cream for serving with the scones whilst trying to get that perfect thick cream and end up with curds and whey. Not wow.
Even if you’re a baking-phobe by nature, or don’t like complicated recipes TRUST ME when I say this is the easiest and best scone recipe I’ve ever tried. The scones are soft with a lovely texture, much better than store-bought (unless you shop at MUCH fancier shops than me), and they taste just right. They also look great. That photo above? THOSE ARE MY SCONES THAT I BAKED, GUYS. I’m pretty sure that if you WANTED to, you could get fancy adding, say, rosemary, or chopped dried fruit (date scones, anyone?), or even cheese, though I’d go with a hard cheese in the mixture with maybe some grated cheddar on top… that said, they’re yummydelicious baked plain and fancied up with the filling.
They are also Best Beloved-approved (and he does love to nom things), and what more validation do you need, really?
I hope you’ll consider giving a crafternoon, and/or this scone recipe, a try- both are totally worth the effort. And I’d love to hear about either in the comments!