Mmmm biscuits…you split one with a fork, slather with butter, and your teeth sink into the fluffy interior, and finish with the robust crunch of the crispy golden crust. If you’ve only ever had biscuits out of a can, then no, you’ve never had a real biscuit. Get rid of that Pillsbury stuff. These are so easy to make, I don’t know why anyone would ever try to substitute with a trans fat canned biscuit. Anyway, this post is for my brother, who loves biscuits (especially with gravy). Actually, he loves all sorts of bread. My family called him “bread monster” growing up and I have to say, it’s still true. But who can blame him? I think freshly made bread (or biscuits) with butter is one of the simplest pleasures of life. Biscuits go with anything…serve with butter at dinner, smother with blackberry jam for breakfast, or make the classic strawberry shortcake for dessert. The possibilities are endless.
Here’s how to make the biscuits:
2 cups flour (10 oz by weight)
1 tsp sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp sea salt or kosher salt
8 tbsp cold butter
2/3 cup milk + 2 tbsp cream, or 3/4 cup milk if you don’t have the cream lying around
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
If you have a food processor, place the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in the bowl and aerate it by pulsing a few times. Dice your butter up into small cubes and throw it in the food processor.
Pulse about 10 times until you see little pea sized bits of butter in the mixture (this step reminds you of pie crust, huh?) If you don’t have a food processor, sift all the ingredients into a bowl and whisk to combine. Use a pastry blender or strong fork to cut the butter into the flour mixture.
Place your flour butter mixture into a wide bowl, and make a well at the center. Add about 1/3 of the milk/cream at a time, and knead the dough with a large strong fork, pushing the flour from the sides into the middle.
Repeat with the other 2/3rds of milk, making sure not to overwork the dough. Once the milk is incorporated into the flour, the dough shouldn’t be too sticky and you can knead it with your hands. Dump the dough onto the counter and knead until it comes together and is consistent/smooth enough to be rolled out. VERY IMPORTANT: Do not overwork the dough. Do not. Overwork. The Dough. Your biscuits will be tough if you do. It’s okay if it’s a little bit shaggy.
Roll the dough out with a rolling pin to about 1/3 inch thick. Use a biscuit cutter or a teacup to cut out little rounds, place on a sheet pan, and bake for 12-15 minutes until golden brown.
Enjoy your biscuits! And just a little note, your biscuits should be golden and crusty on the top and bottom, and fluffy in the middle. If the biscuits seem tough at all, this is an indication that the dough was overworked. Next time, try to use a lighter hand. Happy biscuit eating!
This recipe was lightly adapted from Paula Deen’s Biscuit Recipe http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paula-deen/biscuits-recipe/index.html