Therapeutic Biscuits

March 27, 2008

Everyone has a different name for those Pillsbury biscuits-in-a-tube. In my family, they were always called thump biscuits. It’s a fun name and of course accurate, since more often than not you have to thump them against the counter to get them to pop.

Since I started this blog I have not even remotely been tempted to buy those, so rest assured that is not what this recipe is about. No, these are BETTER than thump biscuits, because it’s made from scratch and you’re not just thumping a carton against the counter, you’re gonna beat the actual dough! How fun is that??

I think that’s actually one of the things I love most about making bread. You can work out all your frustrations. I’ve seen recipes that you have to slam it against the counter, this one you have to give it a good beating, and of course we can’t forget the wonderfully satisfying process of kneading. Bet you didn’t realize just how violent bread making could be. 🙂

I found this recipe on For the Love of Food (the host of the Taste & Create I just did). It was actually a recipe that she had adapted from another blog, and now it’s adapted here as well. I don’t think these will replace the buttery biscuits I made last month, cause I am kinda proud of how much I did to perfect that recipe but these were damn good and will be high on my list.

Buttermilk Biscuits
adapted from recipe on For the Love of Food

2 cups flour
1 tbl baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon salt
5 oz butter

3/4 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 450°F.

Mix all dry ingredients together in a bowl. Add the butter in smaller chunks and cut together with two knives or pastry cutter until it resembles coarse crumbs with some pea sized pieces. Then, add the buttermilk and mix in, once it gets too sticky, use your hand to mix.

Spread a thin amount of flour on your work surface and roll your dough into a ball.

Now comes the fun part. Thwack the dough with the rolling pin a few times then fold it in half. Close your eye, take a deep breath, visualize those who have annoyed you lately and…Thwack! Thwack! Thwack! Repeat the process until you’ve done it about ten times and all the days frustrations have passed.

Roll the dough out to about 1/2 inch thick or so and cut with whatever you want (knife, cookie cutter, biscuit cutter, glass, etc.) Go through the fold-and-thwack-and-cut process with the remaining dough until you’re done.

Place them on a baking sheet with the sides touching so that they rise up and not out. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until golden brown.

Serve warm, and enjoy!

These came out incredibly soft and tasty. I (as always) added a little extra sugar cause that’s just me, but you can adjust it according to your own tastes. The process of making them was almost as good as using a dammit doll!

Also, the very last bit of dough I shaped into a flatish-round with my hands since it was too small to cut and I actually liked how that looked after baking than the cut ones. It’s all a matter of taste but…and please excuse the pun…no matter how you cut it, these are sure to turn out great.

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Fresh Bread Any Day

February 13, 2008

Anyone who knows me knows that I love bread in most of its wonderful forms. French bread, soft sandwich bread, rolls, biscuits, bagels. Those crusty rolls that are pillowy soft on the inside and crispy enough on the outside to cut your mouth. mmmmmm

Whether it’s something fancy, or just a slice of buttered bread when I get home from work, I have to have some bread of some sort every day. Unfortunately with work, I can’t make a loaf of fresh bread every day, so naturally it was important that I get a recipe for something bread-like that I could make any day of the week.

What I love most about this recipe is that in its original form, it makes only four biscuits, making it even easier to handle during the week. I played with it, adjusted the numbers and adapted till I had what I consider the perfect biscuits. Beautifully browned, buttery with a hint of sweetness, and of course soft and delicious. Once I achieved the results I wanted I figured out the math and now I can make these in any multiple of four I need. So now I can come home from a long day at work and have hot, fresh biscuits that don’t come from a tube. And they go well with just about anything.

homemade biscuits

Buttery Biscuits

adapted from recipe found on: CookingClub.com

makes 16 biscuits

2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
fresh pepper (you be the judge of what’s enough. I never measure it and it’s always great)
12 teaspoons butter, cut into small pieces
1 1/3 cups milk

1. Preheat oven to 375. Cover a cookie sheet with foil or parchment paper.

2. Sift flour into a medium sized bowl and whisk in the sugar, baking powder, salt and pepper.

3. Add the butter and with a pastry blender or two knives, cut it in butter until it resembles coarse crumbs with some pea sized pieces.

4. Pour in the milk a little at a time, mixing as you go until you have a very moist dough. You probably won’t need about a tablespoon of the milk. Put that aside.

5. Cut up the dough and form 16 rough balls. Pat down and place on a cookie sheet then brush the tops with the remaining milk.

6. Place in oven and bake approximately 10-15 minutes until tops are nicely browned.

Serve and enjoy 🙂

biscuits

It’s pretty easy to figure out, but let me know if you want the measurements for making just four of these.