Touch of Grace Biscuits, Southern Kitchen-Style
Serves: Makes 12 biscuits
Hands On Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
4 cups White Lily all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup shortening
2/3 cup heavy cream
3/4 to 1 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Heat the oven to 425 degrees. Generously grease an 8- or 9-inch round cake pan with butter or nonstick oil spray.
In a large bowl, combine 2 cups of the flour with the sugar, baking powder and salt. Whisk the sugar and leavening into the flour for a full minute to fully incorporate. Add the shortening and, using your fingers, pinch and mix until no large lumps of shortening remain. The shortening won’t be fully worked into the flour, but all of the visible pieces should be pea-sized.
Stir in the cream. Stir in the buttermilk, 1/4 cup at a time, until the mixture resembles cottage cheese. It shouldn’t be liquidy, but it should be loose enough that it doesn’t really hold its shape on its own. It will be far wetter than typical biscuit doughs.
Pour the remaining 2 cups flour into a pie plate. Using a 2-inch wide ice cream scoop or two large spoons, scoop three mounds of biscuit dough into the pie plate of flour. Sprinkle some of the flour over the top of the dough and, using your hands, pick up the dough rounds one at a time and gently shape into a round, shaking off excess flour. Place into the greased cake pan. Repeat with the remaining biscuit dough. Squish each new biscuit round up next to each other in the cake pan until you’ve filled the pan.
Bake until puffed and golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. Immediately after removing from the oven, brush with butter. Turn the biscuits out onto a plate and serve warm.
About the recipe
There are biscuits and then there are biscuits. You know the ones. Buttery, flaky, tender and sweet, these are the hand-held breads you dream about for weeks to come. They’re perfect on their own — no need for butter or jam or anything else, not that they suffer from any toppings. These biscuits seem made from magic, or at least a very skilled baker, out of reach for the average home cook. But trust us, they’re not.
These “touch of grace” biscuits, adapted from Shirley Corrhier’s book, “BakeWise,” are light, fluffy and always moist. And anyone can make them, easily, at home.