Monday, March 7, 2011

Buttermilk Biscuits

I have never had much luck with making biscuits in the past! (think hockey puck-ish) Several years ago my daughter found this recipe in The America's Test Kitchen Cookbook that changed my luck.  They don't look like your typical biscuit - they are a little more rustic looking, but they are light and fluffy and really yummy! 

The hot and flaky finished biscuits!

This recipe uses cake flour along with all-purpose flour.

This recipe is made in a food processor.  This is right after the cold butter is added.
The dough is cut into 12 pieces.
You quickly form the dough into rough balls.

Buttermilk Biscuits
adapted from  The America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook

A wet dough creates steam when the biscuits bake and promotes a light, airy texture.  If the dough is too sticky for you to shape easily, lightly flour your hands and then form the biscuits.

1 c all-purpose flour, plus extra for the counter
1 c cake flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
8 TBSP  (1 stick) butter, cut into 1/4- inch cubes and chilled
3/4 c cold buttermilk

1. Adjust oven tack to middle position and heat the oven to 450 degrees.  Pulse the flours, baking powder, sugar, baking soda, and salt together in a food processor to combine.  Scatter the butter evenly over the top and pulse to combine, about 12 pulses. 

2.  Transfer the mixture to a large bowl.  Stir in the buttermilk with a rubber spatula until the mixture forms a soft, slightly sticky ball.

3.  Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter and quickly form into a rough ball.  Do not overmix.  Use a sharp knife to divide the dough into 12 even pieces.  Quickly and gently shape each piece into a rough ball and place on an ungreased baking sheet.  (The baking sheet can be wrapped in plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 2 hours.) Bake until the biscuit tops are light brown, 10-12 minutes. 

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