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Chef Jon Ashton Scones

Prep Your Pantry for this Sunday’s Facebook Live Segment with the Guest Chef

There are few things more quintessentially English than scones at High Tea. Crumbly, slightly sweet and abundantly “scrummy,” this go-to pastry is as versatile as it is elegant. Berry scones, chocolate scones, maple scones, seasonal pumpkin or gingerbread scones, scones with cream, scones with jam, savory cheesy scones – the possibilities are endless. And as Crystal@Home touches down in London this week, we’re celebrating this British classic with one of our favorite British chefs on Sunday Cooking with Chef Jon Ashton, as Jon creates his take on one of the all-time favorites: classic scones with lemon and vanilla curd.

Below is the full recipe for your shopping list. Gather your ingredients, prep your pantry and plan a brilliantly British weekend as we travel virtually together. Tune in LIVE this Sunday, May 10 at 3 p.m. on the Crystal Cruises Facebook page with Chef Jon Ashton.

The simple decadence of traditional scones, whether you prefer them with lemon curd, clotted cream, jam or on their own, is reminiscent of afternoon tea time in Palm Court. While your current afternoon tea time may look a bit different, we’re all daydreaming of returning to those days of silver tea service and wandering trays of treats against the backdrop of the ship’s musicians and sweeping 180-degree views.

Crystal Symphony Palm Court Tea
Tea time in Palm Court aboard Crystal Symphony

Did you know? While scones today are synonymous with English tea and culture, they originated in Scotland in the 1500’s. We’ll travel to the bonny hills of Scotland this Thirsty Thursday with another classic taste – stay tuned!

British Scones
By Chef Jon Ashton


4 cups all-purpose flour, more as needed
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons baking powder
1/4 cup sugar, extra for dusting the top
8 tablespoons cold unsalted butter cut into pieces
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup milk
3/4 cup heavy cream more for brushing


Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat to 400°F.

Sift the flour, salt, baking powder and sugar into a large bowl. Add the butter and then rub in with your fingers until the mix looks like fine crumbs.

Add the milk and cream and gently mix to form a slightly sticky dough. 

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead a couple times, then press dough into a 1-inch-thick circle and cut into 2-inch rounds with a cutter or glass. Place the rounds onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Gently reshape the leftover dough and cut again. Brush the top of each scone with a little extra cream and dust tops with a little sugar. 

Bake for 18-25 minutes (rotating midway through), or until the scones are a beautiful golden brown. Serve immediately.

Lemon & Vanilla Curd


3 lemons
1 1/2 cups sugar
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
5 large eggs
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt


Using a vegetable peeler, remove the zest of 3 lemons, or you can use your microplane. Add the zest in a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Add the sugar and pulse until the zest has blended into the sugar.    

Add the butter to sugar in food processor and pulse to cream. Add the eggs, one at a time, and then add the lemon juice, vanilla and salt. 

Pour the mixture into a saucepan and cook over low heat for about 10 minutes (until thickened). Be sure to whisk constantly to avoid making scrambled eggs. Pour through a sieve to remove zest and store in a sealed jar in fridge. 

Crystal’s new Crystal@Home: A Virtual Cruise Experience program brings several elements of the renowned Crystal Experience directly to guests, wherever in the world they are. “Sunday Cooking with Chef Jon Ashton” represents the culinary excellence found aboard Crystal ships, as some of the greatest travel memories are created over the greatest meals.

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