Fluffy, Flaky Buttermilk Biscuits

3 Oct

Seeing as it’s fall and all, I’ve taken to using the crockpot a lot.  Yipes, there was far too much rhyming going on in that sentence.  Moving on.  So far I’ve made a pot roast with carrots and potatoes and some Irish lamb stew in that amazing little appliance.  Those are almost meals in themselves…allllmost.  I needed something on the side, and let’s face it, a wimpy salad just ain’t gonna cut it.  Oh wait, I know…carbs!

Ah yes, my one true love.  If only carbs would just love me the way I love them, all would be right in the world.  Sigh.  Oh well, let’s get to the recipe.  Just look at those gorgeous flaky layers!

Buttermilk Biscuits

Source: every so slightly adapted from Brown Eyed Baker (my very first and very favorite food blog!)

Yield: 12 (2-inch) biscuits

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into ¼-inch cubes
¾ cup cold buttermilk

1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 450 degrees F.

2. Place the flours, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and salt in a large bowl or the workbowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade. Whisk together or process with six 1-second pulses.

3. If making by hand, use two knives, a pastry blender, or your fingertips to quickly cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal with a few slightly larger butter lumps. If using a food processor, remove the cover and distribute the butter evenly over the dry ingredients. Cover and process with twelve 1-second pulses.

4. If making by hand, stir in the buttermilk with a rubber spatula or fork until the mixture forms a soft, slightly sticky ball. If using a food processor, remove the cover and pour the buttermilk evenly over the dough. Process until the dough gathers into moist clumps, about eight 1-second pulses.

5. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and quickly form into a rough ball. Be careful not to overmix. Pat the dough into a ¾-inch-thick circle. Cut out the dough rounds with a biscuit cutter. Push together the remaining pieces of dough, pat into a ¾-inch-thick, and cut out several more dough rounds. Discard the remaining scraps. Place the biscuits on an ungreased cookie sheet.

6. Bake until the biscuit tops are light brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Serve immediately.

* Note 1: If you don’t have cake flour on hand, substitute an extra cup of all-purpose flour and increase the buttermilk by 2 tablespoons.

* Note 2: Once the unbaked biscuits are placed on the cookie sheet, the sheet can be wrapped in plastic and refrigerated for up to 2 hours.

Butter Queen’s Notes:

  • The original recipe calls for 1 cup all-purpose flour and 1 cup cake flour, but since I only had all-purpose on hand, that’s what I used.  They were still awesome!
  • I don’t have a fancy biscuit cutter, but I found that the lids (technically called bands) from home-canned goods work quite well, as you can see above.  I’m sure a drinking glass would work as well.
  • Cutting in butter with a fork or a couple knives is a pain, and I would recommend getting a pastry blender/cutter.  I just got one a few days after I made these biscuits.  This could mean trouble.
  • MAKE SURE you roll the dough to 3/4 inch thickness and no thinner!
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