Who doesn't love some delicious, buttery biscuits. My easy to do recipe will help you deliver biscuits that even Grandma will say she loves.
A key to tender biscuits is to not overwork the dough. The more you mix, or "work", the dough the more wheat proteins, called gluten, will build up and causing the dough to be tough and chewy.
Another thing I like to do is to keep all the ingredients as cold as possible. The key to flaky layers is to keep everything as cold as possible so the butter doesn't have time to soften. Why, you might ask yourself? When the butter is cold, it doesn't melt until its in the hot oven and creates steam to help lift the dough and leave tiny air pockets making the biscuits fluffy.
I hope you enjoy the tender layers of buttery goodness.
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Step 1: Getting Ready
3 cups all purpose flour (about 460 grams)
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 Tablespoon white distilled vinegar
1 1/4 cup cold skim milk
3/4 cup cold butter
Place a cheese grater in the freezer for 15 minutes. This might be overkill for some, but I want keep them as cold as possible.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees
Combine the flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and cream of tartar in a large bowl. Put the bowl in the refrigerator to keep as cold as possible.
Combine the milk and vinegar and put in the refrigerator.
Step 2: Mixing the Ingredients
Take the cheese grater out of the freezer. Grate the butter using the largest holes on the grater. It helps to have some paper towels or wax paper under the grater to handle the butter easier.
Take the bowl of dry ingredients out of the refrigerator.
Add the grated butter to the dry ingredients and toss or stir with finger tips to coat butter and mix.
Step 3: Adding Your Wet Ingredients
Take wet ingredients out of refrigerator and pour into the bowl containing your flour and butter mixture all at once.
Use a fork to stir until moistened. Its ok if there is still a small bit of dry ingredients not yet mixed in.
Step 4: Turn Dough Out
Lightly dust a flat surface with flour and turn the dough out onto the floured work surface. Lightly dust the top of the dough with a little more flour.
Using your hands, press the dough into the shape of a rectangle about an inch thick.
We aren't trying to knead or work the dough. We just want to form the dough into our rectangular shape. Also, try to work as fast as possible to prevent your hands from warming everything up.
Step 5: Folding the Dough a First Time
Fold the dough into thirds like you would fold a letter to put in an envelop.
Folding the dough will create flaky layers throughout the biscuit.
Step 6: Fold Dough a Second Time
Gently pat dough out to make another rectangle about an inch thick.
Again, fold the dough into thirds like you would fold a letter to put in an envelop.
Step 7: Forming the Biscuits
Gently pat down dough into a rectangle that is between 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch thick. Try to keep it as uniform and rectangular as possible.
Step 8: Cut Your Buscuits
Cut biscuits into 12 even pieces, or as even as you can make them.
Place them on a baking sheet about 2 inches apart from each other.
Place in oven and immediately turn oven down to 425 degrees. Bake for 12 - 14 minutes until golden brown.
I prefer to cut biscuits like this so I don't over work the dough, but you can form them into whatever shape you would like.
Step 9: Enjoy
Enjoy with gravy, as a sandwich, with butter and honey, or just plain!
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