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Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Tip the flour, sugar, bicarbonate of soda and a good pinch of salt into a large bowl or food processor. Rub in the butter with your fingers or whizz in a food processor until fine crumbs form. Stir in the buttermilk until you get a moist dough.
Turn out onto a lightly floured surface, then knead once or twice to bring the mixture together. Pat out the dough with your hands until 1cm thick and roughly 20cm by 10cm. Cut in half lengthwise, then cut each half into 6 triangles, dipping your knife in flour before each cut to prevent it from sticking.
Place on a baking sheet, arranging them about 5cm apart. Brush over the tops with milk or cream, then cook in the oven for 10-12 mins until risen and golden brown. Leave to cool a little before serving.