Add some spice to your afternoon tea, try Philippa Davis' fried spiced scones with cardamom and coconut

Nothing beats a fresh scone warm from the oven, but have you thought about adding spice to your afternoon tea? Philippa Davis’ fried spiced scones with cardamom and coconut do just that. Inspired by mandazi, fried African doughnuts, you can bake them just like scones – or attempt the more traditional shallow frying. They may be a little different but you still serve them with jam and cream – of course.

Our apple scone recipe, with an added sprinkle of cinnamon, is for those that would prefer to stick with tradition. And we always recommend a homemade jam to complete the spread – our wild fruit jam is a real treat from the hedgerow.

Delicious and decadent, afternoon tea is one of the nation’s best institutions and worth indulging in. If you’d prefer to skip slaving in the kitchen, follow The Field’s essential guide to afternoon tea, for our favourite spots for teatime treats.


These are inspired by mandazi, fried African doughnuts that are delicious although admittedly not figure friendly. They can be baked like a scone or shallow fried, which is more traditional.

Serves 4 for afternoon tea

  • 260g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 75g demerara sugar
  • 3 tbsp desiccated coconut
  • ½ tsp ground green cardamom
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 124ml coconut milk
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • Vegetable oil for frying

To serve

  • Whipped cream and jam

In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar, desiccated coconut and spices.

In a jug, mix together the coconut milk, egg and butter.

Stir into the dry ingredients and bring the mix into a ball.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out into a 3cm thick disk. Cut into about 10 triangles (or round scones).

Heat a shallow pan of oil to 170°C/325°F.

Fry the triangles for a couple of minutes on both sides.

Serve warm, split open and topped with cream and jam.