You can’t beat the ease and lightness of a homemade biscuit. You only need 6 simple ingredients to make these delectable biscuits, which have a crunchy surface and a fluffy interior. Learning to make biscuits is the first step toward delicious dishes like Strawberry Shortcake and Biscuits and Gravy.
Biscuits have long been a staple in many households. Whether it’s for breakfast, a snack, or a side dish, there’s no denying the allure of a perfectly baked biscuit.
In this article, we’ll unravel the mystery behind the basic biscuit formula, discuss the best ingredients, and even touch upon the business aspect of selling homemade biscuits.
Tools for Making Biscuits
- Use parchment paper to line a baking sheet.
- We used a circular biscuit cutter with a 2 1/2-inch diameter.
- To incorporate butter into flour, use a pastry blender. You may also use a food processor, two knives, or a fork with extra-wide prongs.
- One basin (we used a 4-quart one) is all you need to make this dough.
- A spatula or wooden spoon for incorporating liquids.
How to Make Homemade Biscuits
Follow this recipe to make perfect homemade biscuits:
1. Prepare the Biscuits Dough
Put the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder into a bowl. Using a whisk, thoroughly mix the ingredients together so that they are uniformly dispersed throughout the flour. Put the butter in the flour right now.
The butter was used after being removed from the fridge. When making apple turnover dough, we don’t want it to be as cold as making pie dough. I’ve also tried substituting room temperature butter in this biscuits recipe just to see what happens.
The biscuits were successful attempts both times. Mix the butter with the flour. The next step is to evenly disperse butter cubes the size of peas throughout the flour. This is so much simpler now that I’m using a pastry cutter. Using two forks is another viable option.
Alternately, frozen butter can be grated using a box grater and then mixed with the flour. Blend the butter into the flour until the butter is the size of small peas and the flour looks uniform.
Using a fork, gently toss and combine the flour mixture until large lumps form and all of the flour has been moistened. The cold milk should be added in three or four batches. Biscuits call for a doughier, less crumbly dough than our flaky pastry.
2. Build The Flaky Layers
Place the dough on a work surface that has been lightly dusted with flour. Press the dough together from all sides using your hands to make a ball. Form a rough square, starting at the top and patting down each time. We must be as delicate as possible when working with the dough.
Because doing this by hand results in a rougher finish and fluffier biscuits, I’m skipping the rolling pin. We must avoid compressing it to the point when it loses all of its air and becomes a solid sheet.
In the beginning, the dough may not seem quite right, but that’s fine. Now divide the dough in half using the bench scraper. Put them in a neat stack. Press and pat together once more to roughly shape a square. Once more, divide the whole thing into quarters, stack the pieces, and flatten them out until they’re about an inch thick.
3. Cut The Biscuits
To portion out biscuits, you can use a biscuit cutter or a wide-mouthed glass jar. The cookie cutter I used was only 2 1/4 inches in diameter. About 8 biscuits can be made using this method. The leftover pastry dough can be stacked, squished, and patted into a new dough sheet.
Cut the biscuits in half and place them in a cast-iron frying pan. Buttering the cast-iron skillet is optional. A standard baking sheet will do just fine. We can fit more of them into the space if we use a smaller tray. By packing them in tighter, we ensure that they will bake up nice and even.
4. Bake the Biscuits
To bake, put the cast-iron skillet in a preheated oven of 450 degrees Fahrenheit (230 degrees Celsius) for about 14 minutes, or until the top is golden brown. We need a little lower baking temperature if you’re using a standard baking sheet.
Put the baking sheet into an oven preheated to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C), and bake for about 16 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown. Take the biscuits out of the oven after you see that they have reached the desired doneness.
Breaking Down the Basic Biscuit Formula
- The Foundation: At its core, a biscuit requires flour, fat (like butter or shortening), a leavening agent (usually baking powder), and a liquid (milk, buttermilk, or water).
- The Ratios: Typically, 2 cups of flour will pair with about ¼ cup of fat, 1 tablespoon of baking powder, and around ¾ cup of liquid.
Liquids in Biscuit Making: What Works Best?
- Buttermilk: It imparts a tangy flavor and aids in achieving a flaky texture.
- Regular Milk: Provides moisture without the tanginess of buttermilk.
- Water: Can be used, but may not provide as rich a flavor as dairy options.
The Rising Mystery: Do Homemade Biscuits Rise?
- Yes, They Do!: The leavening agents, especially baking powder, release gas when heated, causing the biscuits to rise.
- Secret Tip: For taller biscuits, place them close together on the baking sheet so they climb upwards instead of spreading outwards.
Flour Power: Choosing the Best Flour for Biscuits
- All-Purpose Flour: A standard choice for many, it offers a balance of softness and structure.
- Cake Flour: Has a lower protein content, leading to softer biscuits.
- Self-Rising Flour: Contains integrated leavening agents, streamlining the process.
The Cost Angle: Are Homemade Biscuits Cheaper?
- Generally, Yes: Making biscuits at home can be more cost-effective than buying store variants, especially when ingredients are bought in bulk.
- Added Benefits: Control over ingredients and freshness.
Unmasking Myths: Why Biscuits are Considered Junk Food
- Processed Ingredients: Store-bought biscuits may contain additives, preservatives, and excessive salt or sugar.
- Healthy Homemade: When made at home, one can control the ingredients, making them healthier.
Biscuits for Business: Selling Homemade Delights
- Local Regulations: Before selling, check local food safety and business regulations.
- Packaging: Use attractive, hygienic packaging to entice customers.
- Marketing: Use social media platforms to showcase your biscuits and attract a clientele.
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This tried-and-true recipe for Homemade Biscuits has been passed down through the generations. Make a batch of biscuits for a brunch main course, a dinner side, or a shortcake appetizer. The biscuit recipe must be good if it has been used for 40 years.
It may be your mother or grandmother, or it could be the mother of your best friend from culinary school (thanks, Barbie!). Whoever it is, it makes no difference. What’s important is that you acquire that recipe, and I have the secrets for these tried-and-true biscuits right here.