These scones are sure to impress.  Make the crème patissiere and date puree a day or two ahead and then the scones are a cinch, but it will look like you have gone to a lot of trouble.  The ricotta ensures a light and moist scone.

1 cup dates
1 cup water
Half portion of crème patissiere (click here for recipe)
1¼ cups self-raising flour
50g cold butter
¼ cup sugar
Zest of 1 orange
1 cup or 250g ricotta

Place the chopped dates into a small saucepan with the water and simmer for 5–10 minutes or until the dates form a paste.  Set aside to cool.

Place the flour and sugar in a bowl.  Grate in the cold butter before using your fingertips to rub the butter into the flour until you have a fine breadcrumb consistency.

Add the ricotta and orange zest and mix until it forms a dough.

On a floured bench, roll the dough out to approximately a 20cm x 40cm oblong.  Spread the date puree over the dough followed by the crème patissiere.  Fold the dough in half lengthwise to encase the filling and then cut into 6–8 portions.  Place on a lined baking dish and bake at 180°C for 25–30 minutes.
scones - date and custard

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