Sunday, September 1, 2013

Buttermilk Biscuits

I love buttermilk biscuits.  They are everything that is right about breakfast in the south.  Many people have dumbed down their biscuity expectations with the omnipresent pop-open cans in the refrigerated section of the store.  I feel bad for those folks, for they know not what they are missing.  Flaky, tender, soft as a cloud, yet sturdy enough to hold an inordinately large slathering of butter and jam.
I have tried several recipes over the years, and most were good, but there was always something not quite right.  Now, though, Hallelujah, I believe that I have found my savior!
This recipe comes from a blog called Une Bonne Vie, and you can find the original post here.
These biscuits can be frozen unbaked according to the recipe, but I haven't yet tested the ones I froze.
Buttermilk Biscuits
Makes about 25 biscuits
4 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup vegetable shortening
2 – 2 ½ cups nonfat buttermilk
Preheat oven to 450°F.
Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. Using a pastry blender (or two butter knives), cut in the shortening. The mixture should look like fine crumbs. Pour in buttermilk and stir until the dough leaves the sides of the bowl. It will be sticky.
Lightly flour your work surface and “plop” the dough down. With floured hands, knead the dough gently about 10 times. With a floured rolling pin, roll the dough to a ½ inch thickness. Cut into 2 – 2 ½ inch circles. (You can also just cut them into squares.) Place on an ungreased baking sheet with the biscuit sides touching. (This helps these beauties stay nice and soft.)
Bake 10 – 12 minutes, until the tops of the biscuits are lightly golden brown. Remove from baking sheet and serve them right away. These are delicious plain or with sausage gravy.
Making Life a Bit Easier…
These biscuits freeze well and are so easy to pop into the oven for an impromptu breakfast or to accompany a nice bowl of soup. To freeze, place unbaked, cut biscuits on a baking sheet (or a plastic cutting board) without sides touching. Put entire sheet into freezer until biscuits are entirely frozen. Working quickly, place biscuits in resealable freezer bags or containers. Keep them in the freezer until you are ready to bake.
To bake frozen biscuits, preheat oven to 400°F. Place biscuits on an ungreased baking sheet with sides touching. Bake 20—25 minutes or until biscuits are lightly golden brown.

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