A while back, someone asked if I ever posted the recipes I use. I do sometimes, but most of the time, when I’m clicking pictures, it is on the fly in the kitchen while I’m actually doing an order, and I don’t have time to really do much more….but this morning I have a minute and want to chat about those biscuits down there.
Now, I’m a 51-year-old woman who grew up in the south and didn’t have a biscuit recipe until somewhat recently. Sure, I’d made biscuits over the years…and by biscuits, I mean pucks.
Pucks of bread that were certainly edible if you put enough butter and jelly on them…but also useful for chunking and holding paper down in a high wind.
To be fair, knowing what I know now, their density and allaround ugliness, had nothing to do with the recipe and everything to do with HOW I was making them.
First, let’s start with the recipe, which I found the same place everyone else finds recipes…on the internet. That said, when you apply this little lesson to your biscuit making, it won’t matter what recipe you use as long as it has…
This is the one I use:
2 cups flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons of butter
1 cup of buttermilk
Mix your dry ingredients then add some VERY COLD butter. I cut mine into little squares…And here is where the secret comes in.
Instead of using one of those “pastry cutters,” you’re going to need to get in there and run that butter through your fingers, squishing it into long, thin pieces instead of a zillion little chunks. Once you can feel that the butter is pretty well all attended to, add your buttermilk and incorporate it into the flour and butter mixture.
This does not mean put it in your kitchenaid and put it on 3.
No, better to get a nice spatula and introduce it all nicely together and when it begins to come together…stop.
Put the bowl in the freezer for about…5 or 7 minutes…while your oven preheats to 350.
Now, take your dough out and turn it out onto a lightly floured counter and gently pat it out. Again, we want to be nice about this. Just pat pat pat it out and cut your biscuits and place them, sides just touching, on your baking sheet and bake for…12 minutes or so or just until the tops are delightfully perfect.
Here is what happens when you get things you bake with butter really cold before you bake them…when that butter begins to heat up in the oven, it melts and lets off steam that makes the biscuits rise up into those mile-high buttery layers. In the pictures you can see the layers.
Butter is magic.