Happy Fourth of July weekend! To celebrate, I've made all-American biscuits with Strawberry Jam. We don't eat a lot of biscuits here in the northern states, but we certainly enjoy them. There are many not-so-good (think hockey puck) biscuits. I think mine were pretty good. They were light, fluffy and had a really nice flavor.
Early this Spring, Gary and I traveled to the South on a road trip. One of our stops was Charleston, South Carolina. We enjoyed a delicious dinner was at Poogin's Porch. Upon arriving, we were presented with a basket of light, fluffy biscuits. I became obsessed with biscuits and set off to find the secrets for making them, just right.
As luck would have it, our hotel had a Southern Living Magazine. One of the articles was on making biscuits. I've used those tips, with others, to make some pretty darn good biscuits.
Another one of our stops was Chattanooga, Tennessee to see our friends, Jerry and Nancy. I needed Martha White Flour, and my guess was I needed to pick it up before heading home if I wanted to find it. Ta-da! I quick trip to a market and I had just what I needed. As an aside, downtown Chattanooga has some great new restaurants.
Back to business. The biscuits are made with flour, cold shortening, sugar, baking powder and buttermilk. To put the finishing touch on the biscuits, I'm topped them with homemade strawberry jam from my friend, Dana. She picked the berries about 1/2 mile from my house. It's SO pretty and delicious!
To make the flour as light and well-mixed as possible with the other dry ingredients, I used a tamis, or French sieve. Any sifter will do. I sifted three times.
Here the tips for making biscuits:
1. Be sure all the ingredients are cold.
2. Handle the dough as little as possible.
3. Make a claw shape with your fingers and use them to stir in the buttermilk.
4. Dip the biscuit cutter in flour, press straight down, and pull up. Don't twist the cutter.
5. Place the biscuits "shoulder to shoulder"on the baking sheet so they rise and don't spread out.
To print recipe click HERE
Recipe: Southern Biscuits
5 cups self-rising flour (I used Martha White)
2 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons baking powder
1/4 pound (113 grams) cold shortening
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Sift together the dry ingredients. Add the shortening and crumble together with the flour mixture until the shortening is in pea to marble sized pieces. Add the buttermilk in three additions, gently used your fingers to mix, until just combined.
Pat the dough on to a lightly floured surface. Gently roll the dough to 1 inch thick. Dip a 2 inch cutter into flour, then press into the dough to cut, pull straight up/out. Repeat to cut the about 16 biscuits. Place on parchment lined baking sheet. Bake 12-14 minutes until golden brown. Brush with butter when just out of the over if desired.
I've got lots more to tell you about our trip. Have a great holiday weekend. Be safe and be kind.