What’s Will B. Cooking?
As a self-professed southerner who takes great pride in cooking southern cuisine, one of the musts to know is how to make from scratch biscuits. I know it’s a lot easier to buy biscuits in a can and I have used them in a pinch. They are definitely easier to cook but for me, using canned biscuits is as bad as using a can of beans when cooking beans and rice or God forbid, instant grits!
The following is my easy to make scratch biscuits. After you make em’ a few times you will find they are easily modified to make different styles of biscuits, such as: cheddar biscuits or butter milk biscuits just by simply subbing in buttermilk or adding cheese for example. As I have said before, and will most likely say again, you must be bold and daring in the kitchen and not afraid of making mistakes.
Pre-heat oven to 325. Place parchment paper over an oven cooking sheet for later. In a medium to large mixing bowl add 4 cups of flour, 2 tablespoons of baking powder, 1 half teaspoon of baking soda. Whisk or stir dry ingredients till mixed thoroughly. Next add 2/3 cups of shortening or lard (I use a butter flavored Crisco. Place lard in fridge to get cold the night before making biscuits to add extra flakiness) add 2/3 cups of real butter (not margarine). Flour a counter or large cutting board then it’s time to get messy! Using your hands work the butter and lard into the flour by squeezing it with your hands. Careful not to completely mix it in. You will want it lumpy or chunky. It helps to make the biscuits fluffy while cooking. Next, add a cup in a half of milk, whole milk is the best, but I do use skim and it works fine. Then I add 2 tablespoons of Mexican vanilla to the mix (Mexican vanilla is really preferred and a superior quality ingredient then regular vanilla). If you cannot find Mexican vanilla, use regular vanilla. I generally use a wooden spoon to mix the milk in, gets a bit too messy mixing the milk in by hand. Pull out dough onto the floured cutting board and fold and push down on dough 10 to 15 times. Add flour if needed if dough is still sticky. I prefer to hand flatten my dough for cutting but if you prefer you can use a floured rolling pin. I generally cut my biscuits at about a 3 quarters of an inch thickness.
Now the fun part: I use a 4-ounce serving dish to cut my biscuits (looks like a tiny bowl you would find at a restaurant that sides are served in). I have found it to be perfect for making the right size biscuits. Other things may be used such as an 8 oz drinking glass or anything of similar shape. As you cut the biscuit you will having to re-fold the dough and just repeat till no more dough is left. Place cut biscuits on cooking sheet and place in oven for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes pull biscuits from oven and brush butter on the tops and place back in oven for an additional 5 minutes.
I hope you enjoy this recipe, and don’t forget my motto “Be bold and daring in the Kitchen”.