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Topic: Southern style biscuits  (Read 1184 times)
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« on: June 28, 2005 12:06:00 AM »

Has anyone else made the Southern biscuit recipe from the latest issue of Bust? How did they turn out? I tried to make some this morning and it was a complete disaster.  I tried to follow the recipe exactly, but the dough ended up so thin and soupy that I had to add in twice as much flour as the recipe called for. When they were done baking (I left them in for about 25 minutes, about 10 minutes longer than the recipe recommended), they were chewy and barely resembled the biscuits in the magazine photo. What did I do wrong?

Anyway, does anyone have any other good recipes for Southern-style biscuits? I'd like to try my hand at a different recipe in the hopes that it'll fare better than the aforementioned biscuit experiment.
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« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2005 07:57:32 AM »

With most baking recipes, adding more or less of an ingredient usually requires adjustments of some of the other ingredients, too. Don't know what the recipe is/was, but biscuit recipes are pretty basic. The rise and flakiness is due to three things; keeping the fat distributed properly, keeping the fat & liquid cold, and handle the mix as little as possible once the liquid is added.

I use a pastry blender or fingers dipped in ice water to keep the fat cold. Once it's distributed, it doesn't hurt to put the flour/fat mix in the fridge for 10 minutes before adding liquid. Keep your liquid in the fridge until you're ready to use it. When kneading, don't handle it more than what the recipe calls for.

2 C. all-purpose flour
heaping 1/2 t. salt
3 1/4 t. baking powder
1 t. sugar, if desired
1/2 t. baking soda
5 T. chilled shortening or lard, chopped into 1/2" pieces
7/8 C. buttermilk

Sift the dry ingredients together into a large bowl (you can also just mix it thoroughly with a pastry blender or whip). Add the cold shortening and work all through the flour with your fingertips or pastry blender until all the flour is combined with a bit of fat; resembling rice or oatmeal. Add the buttermilk and stir vigorously until the dough forms a ball or holds together.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Flouring your hands if necessary, knead lightly for 10 strokes. Stop just as soon as dough begins to look smooth. (Sprinkle some additional flour on the dough if needed, but add as little as possible.)

Pat dough to a height of 3/4 inch. Using a cutter dipped in flour, cut into 2-inch rounds. (Dough scraps can be gently pulled together and patted out again once.) Place on an ungreased baking sheet and bake in an oven preheated to 500F. for about 8 minutes, until lightly browned. Serve hot.

Makes about 12 biscuits.

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