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Cornish Splits – Best of British – Cornwall

Cornish Splits

Who needs scones when you can have traditional Cornish splits instead? Soft and slightly sweet yeasted bread buns are the perfect vehicle to load up with jam and cream. Please note,  jam first, cream on top!

Now what could be more perfect for a Cornish cream tea or English tea party than these Cornish splits? A Diamond Jubilee street party was not something we thought we would be attending. We’d planned to use the additional time to catch up down at our plot. But at the last minute we received an invite to a small party just up the road and we thought it would be churlish to refuse.

Best of British

As Cornwall is the first (and dare I say best) county in the UK, it is no surprise that Kernow kicks things off. I am somewhat partisan, I confess – Cornwall is my home after all.

So to the challenge. I am looking for you to showcase something that embodies Cornish food. This could be the good old Cornish pasty, or for those that love fish, Stargazey pie. For those with a sweeter tooth, there is of course saffron cake or how about a good Cornish cream tea? Not forgetting, of course, that the jam goes first with a hefty dollop of clotted cream on the top – unlike the heathen practices of other counties. Or you may prefer to use some great Cornish ingredients. Famed for its dairy, seafood, vegetables and soft fruit, Cornwall has a wealth of fresh and delicious produce to choose from. Our new potatoes are second to none, our cauliflowers famous and I had my first punnet of local juicy and flavoursome strawberries this weekend. Clotted cream everyone knows about, but we also have some amazing cheeses, including Cornish Blue, winner of the World Cheese Awards 2010, Yarg, a semi-hard cheese wrapped in stinging nettles, Cornish Camembert, Allet Dairy Goat’s Cheese and the Cornish Crackler, an award winning cheddar.

You still have until 15th June to enter this challenge. It’s not only a chance to show off your Cornish inspired creations, but you can also win £50 worth of Amazon vouchers.

I’m not sure how local chocolate is to Cornwall, but I’ve endeavoured to sneak it in anyway!

I’d been planning on baking Cornish splits for my entry into Cornwall’s Best of British challenge, so this seemed like the perfect opportunity to make them. I had Cornish sea salt, Cornish strawberry jam, Cornish Strawberries and Cornish clotted cream to use.

Cornish Splits

So what exactly is a Cornish split? It’s a yeasted bun which pre-dates the Johnny come lately scone as the original receptacle for jam and clotted cream – the Cornish cream tea (jam first every time, whatever they say in Devon).

Cornish Splits - before they've been split!

I had to get chocolate in, of course, now how best to do it? I thought I’d try substituting some of the butter with white chocolate as mentioned by Dan Lepard in his wonderful book Short and Sweet (he’d referred to it as a lard substitute, but what the heck!)

 

So this is how I made Cornish splits and like Frank Sinatra, I did it my way!

  • Melted 30g unsalted butter in a pan with 250ml milk and 100ml water over a low heat.
  • Added 50g white chocolate (G&B) and left to melt.
  • Placed 500g strong white flour into a bowl with a scant tsp of Cornish sea salt and 2 tsp dried yeast.
  • Made a well in the centre and poured in the liquid, ensuring it was warm but not hot.
  • Stirred until all fully incorporated then left for 15 minutes.
  • Oiled work surface and eased dough out onto it and kneaded briefly and then gave it the Dan Lepard turn and fold treatment as interpreted by Carl Legge in his folding bread video.
  • Returned to the bowl, covered with a tea towel and left to rise for 30 minutes.
  • Did another brief knead followed by three turn and folds.
  • Returned to the bowl, covered and left to double in size.
  • Divided into 12 pieces and formed into rolls.
  • Covered with a tea towel and left to double in size.
  • Baked at 200C for 16 minutes.
  • Melted 60g 72% dark chocolate (G&B cook’s) in a bowl over a pan of hot water.
  • When melted added 15g more to temper the chocolate.
  • Stirred until smooth.
  • Cut 12 strawberries in half and spooned chocolate over one side.
  • Left to set then turned them over and spooned chocolate over the other side.
  • Allowed splits to cool, then cut them in half & spread with strawberry jam (homemade by a friend with her own Cornish strawberries).
  • Dolloped a spoon of cream on top, then placed a chocolate strawberry on top of the cream.
 The storm abated as we trudged up the hill with the Cornish splits safely ensconced in a weather proof box. The party had migrated under cover and there was little space on the groaning table for my offering. I needn’t have worried as they disappeared really quickly. In fact they were a roaring success. I was particularly pleased when a local farmer’s wife, who has been making them for many years gave them her seal of approval.
Cornish Splits

 

The splits were soft and slightly sweet and made the perfect foil for the lashings of jam and cream. The dipped strawberries were perhaps not the most elegant, but when they were perched on top of the cream, they looked just right. All in all, I have to say I was quite proud of my first attempt at Cornish Splits.

Other Cornish Recipe You Might Like

Sharing

I’m also entering this for the fabulous Tea Time Treats table which has a summer fruits theme this month chosen by Kate of What Kate Baked. Karen of Lavender and Lovage is also running a giveaway on her blog to coincide with this month’s theme.

Working London Mummy has chosen strawberries as this month’s One Ingredient, so how could I resist? Nazima co-hosts this monthly challenge with Laura of How to Cook Good Food.

The monthly Simple and in Season hosted by Ren of Fabulicious Food is being guest hosted this month by Laura of How to Cook Good Food. And as Strawberries are very much in season during June, I am sharing my splits with this one too.

Finally (I think), I am also submitting my Cornish splits to Javelin Warrior’s Made with Love Mondays where all submissions must be made entirely from scratch.

59 Comments

  1. Janice

    7th June 2012 at 8:01 pm

    Stunning, just as well I didn’t make Cornish Splits for my entry to the Best of British! I couldn’t compete – however I have a plan and it should be blogged next week before the deadline!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:39 pm

      Oh goodie Janice, so glad you have a plan. More entries are very much needed.

      Reply
  2. Green Dragonette

    7th June 2012 at 8:02 pm

    Oh boy do those look yummy! Well done on coming up with such a recipe-your neighbours had a treat!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:41 pm

      Thanks GD. Next time I have a tea party, I will be making these rather than scones. Mind you, I do love a good scone, but it’s nice to do something a bit more unusual and they were delicious.

      Reply
  3. celia

    7th June 2012 at 8:09 pm

    You should be very proud of these, Choc, as they look sensational! Perfect way to celebrate the Jubilee! And I love that you’ve subbed white chocolate – I know you’ve mentioned this before, but I still haven’t tried it. I really must, as there’s heaps of white choc in the cupboard that needs using up. I also have a stash of cocoa butter – I wonder if that would work even better, as it wouldn’t upset the sugar balance in a recipe?

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:44 pm

      Thanks Celia, I have to confess to being a tincy wincy bit proud 😉 Using white chocolate makes for a nice soft crumb. I would have thought cocoa butter would work fine. I have a feeling Zeb Bakes might have tried using cocoa butter once, but I can’t remember what in and what the results were.

      Reply
  4. Karen S Booth

    7th June 2012 at 9:27 pm

    A FABULOUS entry for Tea Time Treats and Best of British and I ADORE Cornish Splits too….I JUST LOVE your chocolate dipped strawberries…..really fab Choclette! 🙂 Karen

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:47 pm

      Thanks Karen. It’s really hard to find Cornish splits these day. But know I’ve made them and realised how easy they are, I shall be baking them again! Dipping the strawberries was much more of a faff than I’d thought. To do it well and more easily you need a big bowl of melted chocolate, but it’s not really practical.

      Reply
  5. Karen S Booth

    7th June 2012 at 9:29 pm

    PS: Thanks for the link to the Breast Cancer Care giveaway too….xxxx

    Reply
  6. Caroline

    7th June 2012 at 9:36 pm

    They look fabulous! I love sweet yeasted buns but hadn’t really thought to serve them as you would scones for a cream tea. I must try this!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:50 pm

      Scones are delicious and I know you are a fan C, but it’s nice to ring the changes and these were delicious too.

      Reply
  7. Phil in the Kitchen

    7th June 2012 at 9:50 pm

    Around 20 years ago I remember being more than a little surprised to be served Cornish splits when I went into a tea room somewhere near Newlyn. But I was quickly persuaded – I just love them. Yours look great and that addition of chocolate sounds fascinating.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:52 pm

      It sounds as though you are one of the rare ones who’ve actually tried Cornish splits. I’ve only ever had them at one particular establishment which has now sadly closed! The white chocolate makes for a particularly soft crumb and also gives a subtle vanilla flavour.

      Reply
  8. Baking Addict

    7th June 2012 at 10:27 pm

    I’ve never heard of Cornish Splits but would definitely love to try yours as they look so tempting! I’ve made my entry but haven’t had time to blog about it yet but will definitely get to it before the deadline. I’m really excited to share it as I made up my own recipe 🙂

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:54 pm

      Ros it’s so hard to get everything posted in time – I often don’t manage it and am always trying to catch up and falling further behind! Really looking forward to seeing what you’ve come up with. The splits were delicious, though I say it myself 😉

      Reply
  9. Paula Hart

    7th June 2012 at 10:36 pm

    These look really really good! My hubby has been asking me to make ‘Devonshire splits’ for a while now,I’m guessing these are the same?

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:25 pm

      Not having followed a recipe for these Paula I’m no expert, but I suspect they are very similar. They aren’t difficult either, so do give them a go.

      Reply
  10. Susan's blog

    7th June 2012 at 10:46 pm

    Lovely…I was sold when I got to the baked rolls part, the rest was a bonus, Great recipe, have often devoured them but never made them. x

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:26 pm

      Sue, I’m impressed you devoured them. I only know one place that makes them and she’s stopped doing her tea room now.

      Reply
  11. Janine

    8th June 2012 at 12:00 am

    I’m from the Devon-Cornwall border and have never heard of these! Will definitely be giving them a go.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:28 pm

      Sadly scones have rather taken the limelight over the neglected Cornish split. There’s a railway pudding someone has entered for this challenge and I’d not heard of that either. Can you be persuaded to enter?

      Reply
  12. manu

    8th June 2012 at 6:47 am

    Yummy recipe and so easy!
    Have a nice week end

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:30 pm

      Thanks Manu – easy and delicious, but sadly not made much anymore.

      Reply
  13. thelittleloaf

    8th June 2012 at 8:26 am

    I love the idea of replacing some of the butter with white chocolate – Dan is full of such brilliant tips!

    These look absolutely delicious and the perfect tea time treat. Being a Londoner I’m torn over the jam/cream first debate, but if I ever make these I promise to do it the Cornish way!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:32 pm

      Yes, Dan’s a real wonder. Your compromise sounds like a good one – hope you do give them a go 🙂

      Reply
  14. Kath

    8th June 2012 at 9:27 am

    I made these once after you suggested them but my recipe turned out more like bread rolls than something sweet so I like the addition of white chocolate in these very much. They looks delicious and I hope you sang Land of Hope and Glory at the top of your lungs 😉

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:35 pm

      Oh bother Kath, you know there was no singing – what a missed opportunity. Oh sorry to hear you weren’t impressed with Cornish Splits. What recipe did you use? I didn’t have one, so found out what I could on the internet and then made it up! The white chocolate makes for a nice soft dough.

      Reply
    • Kath

      8th June 2012 at 5:55 pm

      What a shame there was no singing, you could have shown your patriotic side. I think my recipe, which I think was from my Dairy Cookbook (but I could be wrong) was missing the sweet ingredient. I will try to find another one and give them another go. I might just try the white chocolate.

      Reply
    • Choclette

      9th June 2012 at 7:02 pm

      Kath, the white chocolate works well. This is the 2nd yeasted bun I’ve tried it in.

      Reply
  15. mintcustard

    8th June 2012 at 12:56 pm

    I love yeast cookery but have yet to make Cornish spilts. A real change from scones and something I will try this weekend.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:36 pm

      Oh do let me know how you get on. When it comes to yeast cookery, these really aren’t at all complicated.

      Reply
  16. Vanessa @ Cakes and Teacups

    8th June 2012 at 2:44 pm

    Oh wow! this is an absolute treat I would love! I’ve bookmarked it! : )

    Reply
    • Choclette

      8th June 2012 at 3:37 pm

      Thank you Vanessa. Do let me know how you get on if you do give these a go.

      Reply
  17. Nic

    8th June 2012 at 8:12 pm

    What a great recipe, reminds me of something my mum used to make when we were little – the strawberries top them off nicely.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      9th June 2012 at 6:03 am

      Thanks Nic, I think the strawberries took longer than the splits!

      Reply
  18. Kate@whatkatebaked

    8th June 2012 at 8:30 pm

    Thank you so much for entering this super recipe into TTT! I’d never heard of Cornish Splits before now (and guess what I’ll be tucking into as soon as I’m down in the West Country?!)

    Reply
    • Choclette

      9th June 2012 at 6:04 am

      Thanks Kate. I’d be very interested to know if you found some.

      Reply
  19. Dom at Belleau Kitchen

    8th June 2012 at 9:03 pm

    Wow. Never heard of Cornish Splits but they look so perfectly up my street. I need these in my kitchen now! The chocolate dipped strawberries is a great idea and makes them proper fancy! … and didn’t you do well entering all those challenges. I feel quite left out! ;0)

    Reply
    • Choclette

      9th June 2012 at 6:06 am

      Sorry Dom, need to check out Random Recipes toute suite 😉

      Reply
  20. Foodycat

    9th June 2012 at 1:43 pm

    They look delicious!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      9th June 2012 at 7:03 pm

      Thanks Foodycat – they were delicious 😉

      Reply
  21. laura@howtocookgoodfood

    9th June 2012 at 9:24 pm

    I love everything about these Cornish splits. Somehow they seem like the perfect foil for clotted cream and strawberry jam. You know I have just returned from the most bizarrely unpredictable weather week I have ever experienced in the South Hams. I didn’t even make it to Totnes for lunch at Fat Lemons Cafe. We ran out of days as the weather picked up on the day we were due to go. So, we relied on the local scones and clotted cream. I think I could have done with your Cornish splits to cheer me up on the torrential downpour days! But, I will just have to make them for myself as they sound so wonderful.
    Thanks for entering Simple and in Season too! xx

    Reply
    • Choclette

      10th June 2012 at 7:08 am

      Oh Laura, what a shame about the atrocious weather. I’d completely forgotten you were down last week. Cream teas seem like a good way of keeping things going though and you’ve always got Fat Lemons to look forward to next time. The splits make a very nice change to scones and were delicious in their own right.

      Reply
  22. Johanna GGG

    10th June 2012 at 3:08 am

    love the sound (and look) of these – the chocolate coated strawberries on top look extra fancy – hope you enjoyed the street party.

    I was surprised to see that the yeasted version came before the bicarb version of “scone”. Makes me wonder if it was a great moment when they discovered how quick buns could be with bicarb rather than waiting around for yeast to rise

    Reply
    • Choclette

      10th June 2012 at 7:15 am

      The street party was a little odd as I only recognised about two people (apart from the friend’s who invited us), yet we walk down that street nearly every day to our plot! I believe bicarb is a relatively recent discovery (ie 19C), so bread would have been around long before scones. You’ve piqued my interest now and I’ll have to find out more.

      Reply
  23. simple baking

    10th June 2012 at 1:33 pm

    Never heard of cornish splits but these look delish. Your method of mixing white chocolate in a yeasted bun sounds interesting (m itching to try this :D).

    Reply
    • Choclette

      10th June 2012 at 3:19 pm

      One of the main reasons I wanted to make Cornish Splits was to highlight this much neglected Cornish bake. Hope you do give it a whirl 🙂

      Reply
  24. The Caked Crusader

    10th June 2012 at 3:33 pm

    Oh I do love a cornish split…and love the addition of chocolate dipped strawberries – very posh!

    Reply
    • Choclette

      10th June 2012 at 3:44 pm

      Thanks CC. Sort of figured I’d better do posh as it was for the Queen – in a very round about sort of way!

      Reply
  25. cakeboule

    10th June 2012 at 5:39 pm

    You can not get better than chocolate covered strawberries in my opinion! A very indulgent topping so perfect for the celebrations.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      10th June 2012 at 7:56 pm

      You’re so right, those strawberries were exceptionally good!

      Reply
  26. tandcake

    11th June 2012 at 12:52 pm

    Lovely! I think we need to start a Cornish/Devonshire split revival movement.

    Reply
    • Choclette

      11th June 2012 at 8:38 pm

      Yes indeed, like the sound of that 🙂

      Reply
  27. Grazing Kate

    13th June 2012 at 9:41 am

    I’ve never heard of Cornish splits either…but I’ve had plenty of Devon ones!!

    They do indeed look delicious and it’s so great that you managed to wangle some chocolate into it in two clever ways.

    By the way, when I have a cream tea I always do the Cornish way on one side and the Devon way on the other and I am ‘split’ over which is better

    Reply
    • Choclette

      13th June 2012 at 5:58 pm

      Now that is very diplomatic of you Kate – I like it. And where, I’m wondering, do you get Devonshire splits – I’ve never seen them in a tea shop either?

      Reply
  28. Working London Mummy Working London Mummy

    27th June 2012 at 6:27 pm

    Wow a lovely entry for strawberry one ingredient. I never had them but Cornish list with chocolate dipped strawberries sounds wonderful

    Reply
  29. Working London Mummy Working London Mummy

    6th July 2012 at 9:37 pm

    ps I really do like the idea of these split cakes. V interesting and never seen them. Am doing roundup post a little belatedly but will link to this x

    Reply
    • Choclette

      7th July 2012 at 6:00 am

      Thanks WLM – they make a nice change from scones, although I love scones too!

      Reply

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