Sunday, February 22, 2009

My Final, Definitive, Best Recipe for Biscuits

I think the search has come to an end. So far, I've made these biscuits a half-dozen times, and they get the same rave reviews, while I think they have the best texture. At last night's party, Angie, who is a self-professed homemade bread aficionado, said they were very good.

And I had to agree with her!

This is a collaborative effort between myself and my mom's mom, Cha-Cha. I took her recipe and changed lard for shortening and added an egg. I'm honored to have worked so closely with her, even if it was posthumously.

Don't be afraid of lard. Don't smell it either. It's just pig fat, and this recipe includes 1/2 cup for a baker's dozen of biscuits. So you aren't really eating that much per biscuit, and some sources say it's better for you than butter. If you've ever eaten at a down-home Southern restaurant, you would be shocked to know how much lard you've actually eaten. You should be able to find it at your local Kroger.

2 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 scant teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon sugar
1/2 cup lard, frozen
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 egg
2 Tablespoons melted butter for tops
  1. In a food processor with the blade attachment, mix all dry ingredients - flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar.
  2. Add the frozen lard and combine in processor until lard is fully incorporated and the mix has a cornmeal consistency.
  3. Beat the egg and buttermilk in a stand mixer with a whisk attachment for at least 2 minutes.
  4. Empty the lard mixture into a large bowl, make a well in the middle, and pour in the egg and buttermilk mixture.
  5. Gently stir just enough to combine, return the dough to the processor with the dough attachment, and allow dough to rest for 10 minutes.
  6. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  7. Run the food processor with the dough attachment just long enough for dough to achieve a singular consistency within the processor, about 35-45 seconds.
  8. Turn out on a lightly floured surface.
  9. Press out with well-floured hands into a rectangle. Fold letter-style, then press down and fold letter-style in the opposite direction. Repeat 4-5 times.
  10. Finally, press to a 3/4 inch thickness and cut into 2 inch square biscuits with a large kitchen knife.
  11. Brush tops with melted butter.
  12. Bake for 12-16 minutes.
Congratulations. You just made a batch of damn good biscuits.
Photo courtesy of TexMex Foods.


L said...

I love that you actually posted a picture of the HUGE tub of lard! And shoot yes, that stuff smells bad, but I'm sure it's worth it for the real Southern style biscuits.


Made by Lena