Thursday, February 19, 2009

TFF - Buttermilk Biscuits

I have to confess something. I've never kneaded anything in my entire life. Shameful but true. Never made parathas or rotis from scratch, never made any kind of bread that required kneading and rolling out. Probably because I had one bad episode when I was a budding young thing. Under my mom's directions I was trying to knead my first dough for rotis, and the results were so awful that I've been traumatized ever since! But the last few months have been about overcoming my hesitancy and fears, one tiny step at a time. So today I thought I'd conquer the big, bad world of Buttermilk Biscuits. Mainly because I had a lot of buttermilk left over from when I made that Luxe Red Velvet Cheesecake.

I must say, I'm on a roll with Tyler Florence's recipes! I've found yet another one to love! It's a big deal when you find someone who you can count on for no-fail numminess everytime. I started this biscuit recipe out with a lot of trepidation, but I'm beyond happy with the results. I think I devoured one straight out of the oven, and I'm not even ashamed of it! Mmmmm tender, flaky, buttery goodness.
My Personal Best Buttermilk Biscuits (courtesy of Tyler Florence, with some minor changes)
Makes 6 biscuits

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup vegetable shortening/butter, chilled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
3/4 cup buttermilk

1. Keep your butter/shortening pieces chilled in the freezer for 10 mins, while you preheat the oven to 400 F. Keeping the butter really cold is key!

2. In the meantime, combine dry ingredients together with a fork or in the food processor. Cut in the shortening/butter (using a pastry blender OR 6-8 pulses of your food processor) until mixture resembles coarse pea-sized crumbs. I was too scared to over-process the butter in my food processor, so after a couple of pulses I took the mixture out, and used two butter knives to cut the butter in.

3. Add buttermilk. Quickly fold dry ingredients into buttermilk with a spatula, then your hands, until a sticky dough forms. Chill it in the fridge for 5-10 mins.

4. Turn dough out onto floured surface. Gently fold the dough over itself 3 or 4 times to create layers. Roll dough out to 3/4-inch thick. DON'T knead it too much. Cut with a 3-inch biscuit cutter OR into squares with a sharp knife. Transfer dough pieces to a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Chill again for 5 mins.

5. Make a dimple in the center to help the top rise evenly. Brush with butter (I used milk and it didn't make a difference). Bake for 15 minutes until golden brown. Let them cool for 5 mins on a rack.
Verdict: I'm much more comfortable about kneading and rolling now. These biscuits are perfect for an evening snack or even for breakfast. Just cut them in half and schmear them with your favorite jam. I had fresh blackberries on hand, so made a quick compote and used that. But these are great just plain as well. You'll think to yourself "I'll only take a tiny bite, to taste", and the next thing you know, the whole thing will be gone and you'll be licking the crumbs off your fingers with glee! And if you're anything like me, you'll be scheming to find another excuse to eat two more before DH shows up.

I'm submitting this right away to Tyler Florence Fridays for their weekly roundup.


Joy said...

Your biscuits turned out great! I must admit that I've never tried to make them from scratch out of fear. For shame, yes. I'll try out your recipe and hopefully it'll give me the same lucky streak. Thanks!

Natashya said...

Congrats on some wonderfully flaky looking biscuits!
(I have youthful baking traumas too - one involving cornbread and waaay too much salt..)
So happy Tyler came through for you again!

Debinhawaii said...

Those biscuits are gorgeous! I may have to try this one. Great pick!

Amna said...

LOL...I was going to ask you for a recipe which involved buttermilk...this seems perfect!!!

Muneeba said...

Thks everyone! Just so you know, my first batch of biscuits was gone before I could fully enjoy them, so am gearing up to make another batch this weekend - THAT'S how good they were!

Sophie said...

Ooh, smothered in butter and jam, just like a biscuit should be--delicious!

Anonymous said...

I love buttermilk biscuits! YUM. Yours look delicious especially with the compote.

n.o.e said...

Tyler has a way with Southern classics, doesn't he? These biscuits look amazing, especially that one with the compote. YUM!! And down here, biscuits ARE breakfast food (although appropriate all day as well). Hmm, if you don't taste one right from the oven how can you accurately report, right?

Anonymous said...

Yum! Those biscuits look perfectly delicious!

Muneeba said...

N.o.e. you're right on the money ... Tyler is getting me very excited about Southern classics! Biscuits are heavenly ... I'll just have to visit down South more often. For inspiration of course (not to pig out on biscuits every day, noooooooo, na uh!).

Michelle said...

OH these look so good! I can't wait to try them in my Chicken and Biscuits!

Anonymous said...

i'm having so much fun stepping outside of my comfort zones too lately. these biscuits look good, i'm going to put them on my list of things to try.

Smitha said...

This recipe will kickstart my experiments with biscuits.Never made them before. Wish me luck:)

nicole said...

Wow..these look always feels so proud when a "baked" item comes out well..especially something that can be so intimidating like biscuits! Congrats!

Jenny said...

Yummy! I haven't made biscuits in quite awhile but think I will have to find a good reason to make these.

Sara said...

Great looking biscuits...Perfect to make after a cake recipe calls for 1/4 cup of buttermilk.

finsmom said...

I am always on the lookout for a good biscuit recipe, and these sound fantastic. Thanks for sharing!

Sophie said...

MMMMMMM....Looks as a nice breakfast or some to have as tea time!!! Yum Yum :)!!!

ThisbeWhitney said...

I finally got around to making these biscuits, and I will be using this recipe again very soon. These are perfect, so buttery and flaky!! Thanks for the recipe!