I was going to make a post about my Biscuit recipe, but I didn't get around to it (and then the computer fell ill). So, here is my Biscuit Story. I have been using my Mom's Biscuit recipe my whole life, but a few years ago I got a cookbook called "A New Way to Cook," by Sally Schneider. It's lower-fat cooking. She took some baking recipes, like biscuits and pie crust, and cut the butter down as much as possible, without cutting it out completely. In her biscuit recipe, she replaced some of the butter with sour cream. Well, a few weeks ago, Steve wanted biscuits, and I thought we had some sour cream, but we didn't. We did, however, have some cream cheese - Neufchatel, the lower fat cream cheese, so he suggested I use that. I put half a brick into the biscuits, and MY GOD WERE THEY GOOD! They were very moist and cakey. So, here is my version of her recipe (with a little more butter).
2 Cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp sugar (or more if you want the biscuits sweeter)
1 tsp kosher salt
4 Tablespoons cold unsalted butter
1/2 brick Cream Cheese
3/4 Cup buttermilk or 1/2 Cup regular milk
Preheat oven to 450 - YES, 450 degrees (I had to write that in my cookbook - YES, 450!!)
In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar and salt. Cut in butter and cream cheese. I find it best to use my hands to mix these in - mix until the bits are about the size of a pea. Stir in the buttermilk. At some point, you'll need to use your hands to bring the dough together. DO NOT OVERMIX. Never overmix biscuit dough! Don't knead it. Kind of fold the dough over itself and squeeze until it holds together. Biscuit dough, like pie crust, needs a gentle touch or the biscuits will come out tough. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface, and roll it out or just pat it down, like I do (sometimes on the bottom of the mixing bowl). Using a biscuit cutter, cut out biscuits. Squeeze leftover dough together and roll or pat down to cut out more biscuits. Arrange biscuits on whatever baking sheet you are using, ungreased. My favorite is a rectangular Pampered Chef baking stone. Bake biscuits 12-14 minutes, depending on your oven.
CHEESE BISCUITS: Sometimes I stir in about a cup of shredded cheddar to make Cheese Biscuits. You may need extra buttermilk in that case.
ORIGINAL NEW WAY TO COOK RECIPE: Same as above BUT: No sugar, 2 1/2 Tbsp butter (come on, a half Tbsp of butter?!) and 2 Tbsp regular sour cream - if using sour cream, I usually use 3 Tbsp.
For comparison, here is my Mom's Biscuit Recipe - still a good (if higher fat) recipe:
SOUTHERN GAL BISCUITS (I have no idea where that name came from)
2 Cups all-purpose flour
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 tsp salt
2 Tablespoons sugar
1/2 Cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter [the original recipe calls for shortening - ugh]
2/3 Cup milk (buttermilk is best)
Her recipe says: "Follow usual biscuit method" - see above recipe. Bake 400 degrees 10-12 minutes.
Anyway, last night I made Cheese Cream Cheese Biscuits: