16 September 2010

Biscuits are tasty

And easy! Just keep the butter cold, leave some larger bits, and don't overwork the dough. The less you fuss with it, the higher your biscuits will rise.

These split best with a fork, not a knife. They're super tender and just taste great. I like them with scrambled eggs.

Yes, they actually look like this. Flakes! Layers! Golden brown deliciousness! It might take you a couple tries to stop overworking the dough. It did for me. And I'm still fighting that tendency with pie crust. I think it's going to be a lifelong struggle there . . . The Battle of the Crust or somesuch . . .

Practical Note: I always make more biscuits that we'll actually eat, and freeze some unbaked (like this). In a morning when you're in a hurry, preheat the oven and take these straight from the freezer to the baking sheet. They'll just have to be in the oven a little longer than usual.

Simple Biscuits
(adapted from here)

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup unbleached white flour
1 scant teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 cup cold butter
3/4 cup whole milk or buttermilk

1) Preheat oven to 450 degrees. If you're using a stoneware pan (you should!) stick it in to preheat along with the oven.
2) Stir together flours, salt, and baking powder.
3) Cut in butter, leaving some larger pieces. This helps flakiness. Then stir in milk (I use a silicone spatula*) just until the dough comes together.
4) Roll out on a floured surface with a floured rolling pin. You don't want it sticking-- there goes your tender, non-overworked dough! Roll it to a 1/4 inch to a 1/2 inch thickness, depending on how you like your biscuits.
5) Cut out with sharp biscuit cutters. I like my set from King Arthur. Sometimes I make little biscuits, sometimes big. Place on baking sheet or heated stone and bake for 13-15 minutes. Serve hot with butter.

*like this: Trudeau 10-Inch Silicone Spatula, Green

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