Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Biscuit Chronicles: Attempt 1

I cheated. I kinda feel ashamed.

In my post An Introduction to: The Biscuit Chronicles, I claimed that I was going to start my biscuit-cooking extravaganza today and update every Sunday morning with the stories of my biscuit attempts. And while I'm still going to update on Sunday mornings, as you can see, I didn't exactly wait until this Sunday morning to actually cook my biscuits.

Yep, I'll confess. I cheated and cooked them last night. After a rainy Saturday cooped up inside ALL DAY (I cannot the stress words "all day" enough), with little to do but surf the interwebs and write, I was going a little stir crazy by about 5:00pm. I also have a bit of a cold, and I was absolutely sick of feeling bad and loafing around on the couch sniffling. So I got my lazy butt up and decided to do something. But what?

Laudry? Check. Picking up the various crap that ends up on all our tables and chairs after a week of working? Check. Cleaning up the kitchen until it's spotless? Check...well, kinda, my kitchen's never quite spotless, but you get the point. I had already done all of the things you do on a day spent puttering around the house. I would have loved to go outside and work in the yard, but alas...rain ruins everything.

I checked my watch. Hmm...about suppertime. I call out to Jeremy, "want shrimp etouffee' for dinner?" He enthusiastically yells "yes" from in the living room. Now, I should preface this with the fact that I bought 2lbs of frozen shrimp on our last grocery store trip. Just in this last week, we've had shrimp three times. Once at my sister's house: steamed shrimp. And twice here at home: shrimp and grits & a little dish I call shrimp Katie...a creation of my own mad mind. That's not to mention the fact that next weekend is my birthday, and in celebration, my family's fixing my favorite meal, a low country boil with what else? Shrimp!

Since I was beginning to feel like I might turn into a shrimp, I decided that maybe something different was in order. I searched my pantry cabinet and fridge. Some frozen chicken, boxed mac n cheese, canned greens. My eyes kept landing on the bag of flour I'd bought just for my biscuit experiment this morning. It was in the freezer. On purpose...not like the phone incident earlier this week.

Oh, why the heck not?! I got the flour out and decided that breakfast for supper was in order.

I'd already scouted out my first biscuit recipe. The White Lily Light Biscuit Recipe. It seemed pretty simple and only had three ingredients. My kinda recipe.

The ingredients:

3/4 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup butter (or shortening)
2 cups self-rising flour

After adding my cold flour to a mixing bowl, I add my butter. According to the recipe, you're supposed to cut the butter into the flour with a pastry cutter (which I don't currently own). I used a fork until my mixture was nice and crumbly. Then I added my cold buttermilk and mixed minimally. The dough wasn't very cohesive, and it's not supposed to be. To keep things light and flaky, you work it as little as possible.

I turned the dough out onto a flour drizzled counter top and started pressing it down a few times. I didn't roll this dough out as the recipe called for, because I was nervous about over-working my dough. This part was a little difficult because the dough was so crumbly. I tried to use my hands as little possible, but in order to get things to stick together, I had to press down pretty hard. I pressed and folded in two rounds, then took one of my glasses and began cutting out my biscuits.

I put my biscuits on my preheated at 500 degree greased baking dish and slip them into the oven. Jeremy has been dancing by my side for most of this endeavor. To say the least, he's a little excited about these biscuit experiments.

10 to 12 minutes later voila! Biscuits are ready!

The Verdict:

These biscuits turned out tasty-licious. Seriously, their flavor would be hard to beat. So many of my past biscuit attempts have tasted too flour-y (yep, it's a word) or just bland, but these had an incredible amount of flavor for so few of ingredients. They turned out extra crunchy on the bottom, which was great, and the texture was light and fluffy, just as the recipe promised. And what's more? They turned out SO pretty! Just look at 'em!

 What I would do differently?

As much as I loved these biscuits and as tasty as they were, I'd probably do a few things differently next time I try this recipe. For one, I need to get a pastry cutter. The fork I used didn't quite do the job it needed to, so my butter wasn't very evenly dispersed.

Two, I might not preheat my baking sheet at this high temperature. The biscuits got extra crispy on the bottom, something I didn't care too much for.

Three, I'd work the dough even less than I did. I think I over-worked it. Something I'm infamous for with doughs. I think if I worked the dough a little less they would have turned out more tender. For the last two biscuits I cut out, I had refolded and pressed out the scraps from the first group of cut-outs. These two turned out looking like elephant man biscuits...bless their hearts. 

Call for recipes! If any of you fabulous readers have any biscuit recipes you'd like me to try out, let me know. If I use your recipe, I'll feature you (and your blog if you have one) in The Biscuit Chronicles post. Just shoot me an email at katieross83[at]gmail[dot]com.

'Til next time!


  1. I am just impressed that you tried this...I have never attempted bisquits other that a 'can'! I am envious and a bit motivated!
    I know I am going to love this series!!!

    have a lovely sunday!

  2. I've never had any success making things like this with butter, I'm not sure why, they just never work. I do, however, have a fantastic recipe that involves cream. I've emailed you!

  3. @Melody-Mae: trust me, it takes a LOT to work up the motivation to do this. I'm used to biscuits from a can as well...or a Bisquick bag! :)

    @Jo: thank you for the lovely recipe! I can't wait to try it.

  4. I'm of the belief that super clean and spotless kitchens are sterile and boring - give me a little roughness around the edges anyday!

    Sooo i'm a bit embarrassed to admit i'm unfamiliar with the "biscuit" concept...over here a biscuit is what i believe you refer to as a cookie!

    In saying that, your creation looks super delicious and i wouldn't mind sinking my teeth into them! Yum!

    Thank you so much for stumbling across my blog, it meant that i was able to stumble back over to yours, which i'm LOVING!

    Can't wait to see more crazy biscuit adventures from you :) xx

  5. Those look so yummy and delicious - I'm inspired to try them for myself!

  6. They look good! My biscuits could be weapons :( I'm blog hopping and found yours. I'm now following. Would love for you to check out my blog and follow back!

  7. @TheFancyFlea: Eep! Thanks so much for wandering over to my blog. I'm so new to this blogging world, but I've found a few so far that I absolutely love. I've included them (and you) in my link love tab at the top of the page. It's very exciting to have another one of my faves visiting my blog.

    I should've crawled out of my small-town-girl shell and realized that "biscuit" may not mean the same thing to everyone in the world. Depending on where you're from, a "biscuit" in the South may be similar to a "scone" (thanks for that tidbit, Jo!).

    @Natalie: Let me know if you do. I'd love to know how your's turn out.

    @Let'sMakeADifference: Believe me, my biscuits have been hard enough to use as weapons, too. Thanks for stopping by!

  8. lol... elephant man biscuits! These look great! I've never tried making homemade biscuits but this recipe is so simple and thanks for adding in the extra tips.

    Toni @ Carrigan's Joy

  9. Well...these biscuits look yummy! Might just have to make them for my tribe:-) follower from Weekend hop. Would love for you to visit and return the follow. HAGW!

  10. I am intrigued by this talk of 'biscuits from a can'. I'm trying to figure out how that would work - and failing!

  11. Whatever you call them, they look scrumptious!

    Thank you so much for adding my button, i've added yours too :) xx

  12. Those look scrumptious. I'm glad you are sharing the recipes as you go along as well. 3 ingredients, you can't beat that.
    What is shrimp etouffee? Is that a southern thing?

  13. Those look great! And don't worry, I wouldn't say you cheated.

    Happy birthday (early)!! I hope you have a splendid one!

    P.S. I'm jealous, I want shrimp!! I should get some!

  14. Wow! You did a wonderful job with these biscuits.I followed you from the foodie blog roll and I'd love to guide Foodista readers to your site. I hope you could add this Biscuit widget at the end of this post so we could add you in our list of food bloggers who blogged about recipes for biscuit,Thanks!

  15. looks yummy... I love biscuits!


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