Yesterday morning I woke up at 1:30 am, for no apparent reason. I stayed in bed trying to fall back asleep but eventually, around 3:00 am, I gave up and accepted that sleep was not going to be visiting me any time soon. I quietly snuck out of bed, went out to the living room, and turned on the TV.
Nothing to watch on DVR, darn. I sat there for a minute before I decided that, clearly, the best use of my time would be to make biscuits. After all, Boyfriend loves biscuit breakfast sandwiches. Or so I’ve been told, he doesn’t really get to eat them since I never have biscuits around the house.
Biscuits and I are a dangerous combination. Lethal. Self control – I have none.
So at 3:00 am, on a Wednesday morning, in a dimly-lit kitchen, trying to be as quiet as possible… I got to work. No process photos, as there was no light. Pitch black outside. Thank goodness for my light box or there would be no biscuit photos at all.
Start to finish, probably about 20 minutes, plus 20 minutes of baking time. Not bad for freshly-baked biscuits, eh? Fastforward to 6:45 am, boyfriend messages me:
I am amazing… aren’t I?
So biscuits, make them. They are so easy you can make them sleep deprived in the dark. Your house will smell like buttery goodness and at least you’ll be rewarded with a fresh, warm biscuit (or five) when you’re done.
I enjoyed mine with a light smear of Bouchon strawberry jam, though I suspect a drizzle of honey would’ve been a delightful match as well. Boyfriend enjoyed his filled with scrambled egg, cheese, and bacon. I meant to catch a pic of his, but I forgot. Which is understandable, since it was like 6:00 am and I was running on empty.
(and lots of tips) – Adapted from Per Se, NYC
Makes 8 – 10 biscuits using a 2-1/2″ biscuit cutter
- 2 cups All Purpose Flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1½ teaspoons salt
- 1 stick of butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes and chilled
- 1 cup buttermilk, chilled
In a large bowl, mix together all of the dry ingredients. Add the butter cubes and cut in with a pastry cutter. (Alternatively you could pulse in a food processor and then transfer to a bowl).
Once the butter is cut into the flour (should be about pea-size chunks) make a well in the middle of your flour mixture and add your buttermilk. Stir around the outside with a spatula, pushing the flour from the edges and bottom into the buttermilk. Stir approximately 12 times, DON’T OVERMIX! The dough may still be shaggy.
Dump dough onto a floured surface and pat to 1 1/2-inch thick. Cut to desired size and place on a baking sheet. The closer together, the higher they’ll rise.
Bake in a pre-heated 400°F oven until golden brown—about 20 minutes. If you use a 2½” cutter, you’ll get 8-10 biscuits.
*If you want to use shortening instead – you will get a slightly less puffy biscuit. Butter is best for biscuits with sweet things, while lard is better with savory things.
*The higher the fat content in the liquid (or solid fat) the flakier your biscuit.
*Keep everything cold, except the oven. Your oven should be preheating for at least 20 minutes before you put your biscuits in.
*When cutting the fat in, remember the smaller the crumbs, the fluffier the biscuits. Bigger chunks (and a little extra kneading) will make flakier biscuits.
*Don’t twist your biscuit cutter – you will fuse together the outer layers and keep the biscuits from rising properly!