I always get excited when I see biscuits on a brunch menu. Whether served alone with some jam or as part of a sandwich, I love the taste of biscuits. But for some reason I never think to make them. The other day, I was trying to figure out what to do with my leftover buttermilk. It seems like every time I buy buttermilk for a recipe, I always have some leftover – which really isn’t a problem, because there are so many great baked goods to make that use buttermilk. So as I ran through my old standbys – muffins, bread, pancakes -a new thought popped into my head. Biscuits! We would be having warm, fluffy biscuits for breakfast.
TheBetterHalf was very impressed that I whipped up biscuits so quickly. As much as I enjoy biscuits, he might like them even more. I think all of his favorite brunches in New York involve biscuits. Anyway, he assumed that because they are like bread, they would take hours to make. I do want him to think that I slaved away for hours, but the truth is these took no time to make! I’m so glad I re-discovered just how easy biscuits are to make – they are definitely going to become a more regular guest in our kitchen.
Yield: 6 biscuits
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- Rounded 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 3/4 cup well-shaken buttermilk
- 1 tablespoon milk or cream for brushing biscuits
Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 425°F.
Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda onto a sheet of wax paper, then sift again into a bowl. Blend in butter with your fingertips until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add buttermilk and stir with a fork until a dough just forms (dough will be moist).
Turn dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead gently 6 times. Pat out dough on with floured hands into an 8- by 5 1/2-inch rectangle. Using a lightly floured biscuit cutter or a glass, cut out your biscuits. You can also cut the dough into rectangles. Transfer biscuits with a metal spatula to an ungreased baking sheet, arranging them 2 inches apart, and brush tops with milk or cream. Bake until pale golden, 12 to 15 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool to room temperature.