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Hot and fluffy buttermilk biscuits

This is one of my favorite ways to make buttermilk biscuits. It's incredibly easy and quick, and consistently gives great results (light and fluffy). Plus, I'm not gonna lie, shaping those blobs of dough is incredibly fun. I don't know why, I just love the feel of super soft dough in my hands.

Can you believe this ugly duckling...



...turns into a beautiful swan?



Remove from the pan and pull them apart onto a clean kitchen towel. They'd look gorgeous in a basket. You know, if I had one.





Mile-High Biscuits - recipe from Cook's Illustrated

Ingredients

Dough

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (10 ounces)
1 tablespoon double-acting baking powder
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon table salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
4 tablespoons unsalted butter (cold), cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1 1/2 cups buttermilk cold, preferably low-fat

To Form and Finish Biscuits

1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour (5 ounces), distributed in rimmed baking sheet
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Method

1) Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 500 degrees. Spray 9-inch round cake pan with nonstick cooking spray; set aside. Generously spray inside and outside of 1/4 cup dry measure with nonstick cooking spray.

2) For the dough: In food processor, pulse flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and baking soda to combine, about six 1-second pulses. Scatter butter cubes evenly over dry ingredients; pulse until mixture resembles pebbly, coarse cornmeal, eight to ten 1-second pulses. Transfer mixture to medium bowl. Add buttermilk to dry ingredients and stir with rubber spatula until just incorporated (dough will be very wet and slightly lumpy).

3) To form and bake biscuits: Using 1/4 cup dry measure and working quickly, scoop level amount of dough; drop dough from measuring cup into flour on baking sheet (if dough sticks to cup, use small spoon to pull it free). Repeat with remaining dough, forming 12 evenly sized mounds. Dust tops of each piece of dough with flour from baking sheet. With floured hands, gently pick up piece of dough and coat with flour; gently shape dough into rough ball, shake off excess flour, and place in prepared cake pan. Repeat with remaining dough, arranging 9 rounds around perimeter of cake pan and 3 in center. Brush rounds with hot melted butter, taking care not to flatten them.

4) Bake 5 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 450 degrees; continue to bake until biscuits are deep golden brown, about 15 minutes longer. Cool in pan 2 minutes, then invert biscuits from pan onto clean kitchen towel; turn biscuits right-side up and break apart. Cool 5 minutes longer and serve.

Once they're done, slather them with butter and jam (what I did the night they were baked). Eat them plain. Drizzle honey or syrup on them. Use them to sop up juice from your steak. Or eat them for breakfast, smothered with cream gravy (what I did the next morning).





I also used the opportunity to make Julia Child's 20-second French omelette for the first time.

Comments

( 54 comments — Leave a comment )
kitty_kitty_
Mar. 3rd, 2009 10:45 am (UTC)
Ohhhhh, that's what you meant by biscuits! You mean scones. ;)
gemfyre
Mar. 3rd, 2009 10:46 am (UTC)
That's what I was just thinking!

I also need to know what double-acting baking soda is in Australia.
(no subject) - anita_margarita - Mar. 3rd, 2009 02:45 pm (UTC) - Expand
riela
Mar. 3rd, 2009 04:57 pm (UTC)
In the US they're biscuits though :-) It was really confusing when I worked at Trader Joe's and someone came in asking for biscuits. I said that we had mix, but nothing premade. He said that he'd heard that we had a large selection of biscuits. We wandered around the store for a while till we hit upon the cookie aisle where he cleared up the confusion ;-)
(no subject) - kitty_kitty_ - Mar. 3rd, 2009 11:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sarea_okelani - Mar. 3rd, 2009 06:34 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - kitty_kitty_ - Mar. 3rd, 2009 11:34 pm (UTC) - Expand
falling_empress
Mar. 3rd, 2009 10:51 am (UTC)
i'm so hungry -_-
mach2kudou
Mar. 3rd, 2009 03:30 pm (UTC)
me too, bb :(
pariah_luna
Mar. 3rd, 2009 11:47 am (UTC)
Lovely- and I'm famished now, lol.
amnotcute
Mar. 3rd, 2009 12:29 pm (UTC)
I could just eat that right now. Nom nom.
lellyvision
Mar. 3rd, 2009 01:57 pm (UTC)
Wow those look good, especially the last photos of them with breakfast.
laceyslostlove
Mar. 3rd, 2009 02:36 pm (UTC)
why are people calling those scones? they're not sweet or cakey...or shortbread like. they're biscuits for sure. and i'll be veganizing this deliciousness.
poledradog
Mar. 3rd, 2009 03:22 pm (UTC)
I'm assuming you're from the U.S. (as am I), and the people who are calling them scones are from the UK and Australia. I believe what we call biscuits, they call scones, and what they call biscuits, we call cookies. Not sure what they call the things we call scones...maybe sweet scones? UK/Aussies...what do you call the things that look sort of like scones, but are sweet instead of savory, and often have dried fruit (like cranberries or blueberries) mixed in them?

To the OP: These look fabulous, and I've been looking for a biscuit recipe that I actually have time to make on a week morning. This looks like it fits the bill; it really doesn't take that long to mix up a batch, but it was the rolling out and cutting that was driving me into that "takes too much time for a weekday" zone. I think I'll try these tomorrow (and surprise my boys; normally Wednesday is dry cereal day, which they *always* complain about).
(no subject) - monkeypunk - Mar. 3rd, 2009 03:34 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sarea_okelani - Mar. 3rd, 2009 06:45 pm (UTC) - Expand
mikeymo421
Mar. 3rd, 2009 03:27 pm (UTC)
YUMMY!
organic_chemist
Mar. 3rd, 2009 05:30 pm (UTC)
Ohhhhh, that looks sooooo good! I think I will make them, probably tomorrow.

Thanks for sharing the recipe and the pictures!
revolution_grrl
Mar. 3rd, 2009 07:07 pm (UTC)
Oh my, those look both lovely and delicious. Thank you for sharing!
felixdiecat
Mar. 3rd, 2009 07:15 pm (UTC)
They simply look orgasmic.... *droooooooooools* *slobbers on keyboard*
betagoddess
Mar. 3rd, 2009 07:25 pm (UTC)

I'm going to try these for sure. Thanks. =>}

Do you by any chance have a recipe for what you're calling "cream gravy"? Is it like a White sauce/Bechamel or the kind of sausage gravy I see on US TV or what?

I'm in Canada, btw, and we call them biscuits, too. And if we're feeling like eating an English meal, we call them scones! =>}

As far as I'm concerned, this is the ONLY kind of batter to use for strawberry shortcake. If you make it with white cake, it's just strawberries and cake. *g*


sarea_okelani
Mar. 3rd, 2009 08:06 pm (UTC)
Good to know re: Canada calling them biscuits also! I guess it's a North American continent thing. :D

Cream gravy: Yes, I suppose you could consider this a kind of bechamel, though that's so fancy sounding for gravy. ;) Basic cream gravy: Fry up a couple slices of bacon (errrr U.S. bacon, rather than what we call Canadian bacon, which I'm not even sure is actually Canadian, kind of like French fries not really being French...). Keep the drippings that remain (or you could just use a couple tablespoons of oil/butter I suppose) and whisk in 2-3 tbsp of flour. Whisk constantly for about a minute to darken the roux a bit. Whisk in about a cup of milk, or however much needed to create as thick or thin a consistency as you prefer. Whisk constantly so the mixture smooths out. Cook until it reaches that point, thinning with additional milk if desired. Season with salt and pepper.

I used this basic method for the gravy you see pictured, except I diluted the cup of milk with 1/4 cup of beef broth so the gravy would have a heartier flavor.
(no subject) - betagoddess - Mar. 3rd, 2009 08:14 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sarea_okelani - Mar. 3rd, 2009 09:29 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - betagoddess - Mar. 3rd, 2009 09:38 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sarea_okelani - Mar. 4th, 2009 12:39 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - betagoddess - Mar. 4th, 2009 01:09 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - paksenarrion2 - Mar. 4th, 2009 02:14 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - betagoddess - Mar. 4th, 2009 02:15 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - paksenarrion2 - Mar. 4th, 2009 02:31 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - betagoddess - Mar. 4th, 2009 02:33 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - atypia - Mar. 4th, 2009 03:31 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - betagoddess - Mar. 4th, 2009 03:33 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - atypia - Mar. 4th, 2009 03:36 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - betagoddess - Mar. 4th, 2009 03:38 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - atypia - Mar. 4th, 2009 04:10 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - betagoddess - Mar. 4th, 2009 04:11 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - atypia - Mar. 4th, 2009 03:29 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - betagoddess - Mar. 4th, 2009 03:32 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - abitofglitter - Mar. 3rd, 2009 09:46 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sarea_okelani - Mar. 4th, 2009 12:46 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - abitofglitter - Mar. 4th, 2009 01:00 am (UTC) - Expand
tudorpot
Mar. 3rd, 2009 09:41 pm (UTC)
missed step?
It seems that a step or two are missing- ie putting ?how much flour where?


sarea_okelani
Mar. 3rd, 2009 09:47 pm (UTC)
Re: missed step?
Hmm I don't see any missed steps -- specifically which part are you having trouble with? There are 2 flour parts; they're listed separately in the ingredients list. First is the flour that you use in the dough -- described in step 1 where you pulse it together w/ other biscuit dough ingredients. Then there's step 2, where the flour is specified in the ingredients list to be distributed in a rimmed baking sheet. Step 3 describes how you drop the dough into the flour on the sheet to form/finish the biscuits. Measurements are also specified in the recipe.
kimonkey7
Mar. 4th, 2009 12:26 am (UTC)
These? Look awesomesauce. Especially with the graaaaavy.

*weeps with jealousy*

Must. Make.
mercuryisme
Mar. 4th, 2009 01:07 am (UTC)
That breakfast looks so good. I am so hungry. Sigh. Why you do this to me? :(
laughingrat
Mar. 4th, 2009 03:30 am (UTC)
I saw this post when I was all hungry and stuff this morning, so of course I was determined to make them during the 2 hour break I had between jobs this afternoon. And damn, were they fabulous. The process is awesome, too. I'm used to either rolled biscuits (I have a heavy touch with the dough so these are always a bit dense when I make them) or drop biscuits, which I'm less fond of, so these were like the perfect combination of each type.

I should mention that I didn't bother with the big pan filled with flour thing--just filled a regular-sized cereal bowl with about 1/3 C flour and used that. Worked fine, easier to clean up. :) Just FYI.

I've never made proper sausage gravy, or actually any kind of gravy. Easy to do? What would you recommend, frying up some sausage, then mixing the fat from it with some flour, adding some cream, and letting it cook for a few minutes? Is it that simple?

EDIT: Ha, I went and actually read the comments, and you gave instructions for the gravy. Nice!

Edited at 2009-03-04 03:33 am (UTC)
atypia
Mar. 4th, 2009 03:33 am (UTC)
sarea_okelani posted their recipe for that gravy here : http://community.livejournal.com/food_porn/5197055.html?thread=58648575#t58648575

Follow the thread and read lots of other delicious recipes that can be made from similar recipes :)
(no subject) - laughingrat - Mar. 4th, 2009 03:39 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - sarea_okelani - Mar. 4th, 2009 04:06 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - atypia - Mar. 4th, 2009 04:10 am (UTC) - Expand
scienceguru
Mar. 4th, 2009 04:21 am (UTC)
holy monkeys, those look divine!

And with sausage gravy...I bet it is food of the gods!

I know what I'll be making for breakfast this weekend!!
blakta2s
Oct. 28th, 2012 09:53 pm (UTC)
I had to post a comment mainly because you just made my day...but that's not all together true. You made the rest of my days every time I make biscuits from now on. I've always secretly prided myself in my baking and cooking abilities. You can't deny it feels great to be lavished with praise when you pull off the worlds best pie from scratch with homemade ice cream on the side or a plate full of barbecue ribs with meat that slides off the bone and melts in your mouth, etc, etc, etc. You have to be careful that you don't strut around like a peacock and let your head get all swole up, but deep down, it's good to be queen. I have to admit today that I've had a secret. My biscuits were shameful. My husband is something of a biscuit connoisseur. There were two particular biscuits that he'd always loved and for all time has held up all other biscuits to their standards. I was determined to beat those damned biscuits out one day and lord knows I tried. I've probably tried 25 plus biscuit recipes out. They were all basically the same in one way or another with a twist here or there in preparation technique or a strange ingredient that promised the perfect, fluffiest, most delicious biscuit, but alas, they never worked out. I baked in secret. I baked not in secret. I baked in my sleep. I baked with my sister, I baked with my mother, I baked with my friends. I used my grandmothers cookbooks. I shared my grief with my mother many times. Of all of the tricks I tried, it was my Mother who was closest to the true secret of perfect biscuits. Her secret was this: The less you handle the dough, the fluffier the biscuit. Don't roll the dough out, gently pat it out. cut your biscuit and toss it on the sheet. bake. They came out close...but not close enough. I found your site today in my search. My husband of 21 years smiled at me gently when I told him I was trying a new recipe It was different this time in the entire way you form and present them for baking. I was afraid to be hopeful. I forced myself not to look at the biscuits while they baked. When it was time I turned them over onto a mass of paper towels and at first appearance I was somewhat concerned. I let them sit for a minute before I began to gently break them apart. Immediately I could see that I had a completely different biscuit in front of me. I thought "Wait a minute, they look too....well, perfect." I poked at one of the middles. It was done through!! How could that be? They were so tender! Too tender, I thought...they have to be too tender. they'll probably fall apart into mush as soon as I bite into one. I picked up a biscuit and bit into it...I chewed a perfect mouthful. I bit into it again. I couldn't believe what was happening! I called my husband to the kitchen. I had prepared my sausage and gravy while I waited for the biscuits to bake. "Honey....I think you might like these." I said to him as I slid his plate across the table. He sat down and ate. He took a mouthful and chewed. He took another and another. "Honey," he said with his mouth full of biscuit and gravy "These are good." he chewed happily. "Real good." That's all it took. I have found the biscuit that can please my husband. That is saying a whole hell of a lot. Excellent recipe. Excellent. Thank you SOOOOOO much! I will forever use this recipe in all of its flaky, tender perfection.


sarea_okelani
Oct. 28th, 2012 11:53 pm (UTC)
That is the best story ever!! These are totally my favorite biscuits to make, so I'm so glad that it worked out for you as well. And they're really so simple, you know? That's really awesome that they were able to hit the spot for you and your husband. (Especially after all the time and effort you put into finding a biscuit recipe that worked!) I really hope they will be your go-to biscuits for years to come. :D
( 54 comments — Leave a comment )

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