Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Alton's Buttermilk Biscuits

We did not grow up eating buttermilk biscuits...the first time I tasted one I was hooked. So easy to make...they rise up like flaky little pillows. Perfect for a lazy Sunday breakfast...perfect anytime. I always feel that I do not make them enough. This time I made them there were only two of us. They froze nicely...we enjoyed each and every one.

I always bake my biscuits in a very old black iron skillet....one of the first things I ever bought after we
moved to San Francisco. I found it at the Sausalito flea market...it was $2.00 in 1979. I have treasured it ever since. That old pan has seen a lot of love since then and carries with it all the love it received before it found me.
I have never met a biscuit I did not like...but this one has been my favorite for quite some time. I love that it does not have a ton of fat in it. I have made them with all butter, but prefer them with shortening and butter. I use Spectrum brand Organic shortening for these. If you really do not want to use shortening, you can use all butter. This is Alton Brown's Grandmother's biscuit recipe. I always make a little indentation on the top of my biscuits with my thumb...this is supposed to make them rise evenly, mine were a little lopsided this time because they rose so high. I saw Alton's Grandma do it, so I have done it ever since.
Southern Biscuits
recipe courtesy Alton Brown
2 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons shortening
1 cup chilled buttermilk

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Using your fingertips, rub butter and shortening into dry ingredients until mixture looks like crumbs. (The faster the better, you don't want the fats to melt.)
Make a well in the center and pour in the chilled buttermilk. Stir just until the dough comes together. The dough will be very sticky.
Turn dough onto floured surface, dust top with flour and gently fold dough over on itself 5 or 6 times. Press into a 1-inch thick round. Cut out biscuits with a 2-inch cutter, being sure to push straight down through the dough. Place biscuits on baking sheet so that they just touch. Reform scrap dough, working it as little as possible and continue cutting. (Biscuits from the second pass will not be quite as light as those from the first, but hey, that's life.)
Bake until biscuits are tall and light gold on top, 15 to 20 minutes.

Enjoy warm from the oven with butter and jam...yum.



54 comments:

  1. I have the cast iron..I just need shortening..how can I resist these?Puffy little pillows is right.. we're on the same track today..You need a biscuit bag:)
    Done.

    xx

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    1. Bisous times a million sweet Nana...
      L~xo

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  2. Mmmmm....these look wonderful, light and fluffy. It is time to break out the cast iron skillet!

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    1. Thanks so much Kate...you will not be sorry!

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  3. Oh please pass the biscuits - and some butter.

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    1. Consider them passed...wish you were just a little closer!
      Thank Linda...xo

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  4. OOOOH I love homemade biscuits. Warm with butter. Perfect Linda. I always put a little dent in my biscuits too.

    ~Ann
    PS. So glad to see you posting again.

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  5. Thank you dear Ann...you always make gorgeous biscuits!

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  6. Yum! Just yum, frankly! They look magnificent Linda!

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  7. Thanks Stella...you should try them....for breakfast with a fry up! Yummy!
    xo

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  8. In the oven now..couldn't wait..so easy and they were soft and light to form..thanks ..as always..Bisousxx

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  9. So good..Jacques and I just had one w/ buttah..soft..melt in your mouth..if your biscuits taste this good..you must have a great scone recipe..have probably seen it..duly noted and never got around to..but it's ringing a bell so I am off to peruse..they rose high and beautifully..2 acted up like yours..but I liked that:)

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  10. Oh I am so glad you like them and so happy that Jacques liked them too!
    My scone recipe is pretty awesome...it is here just look for cream scones.
    Bisous to you too my sweet!

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  11. An old cast iron skillet is a real treasure. There is nothing better than a flaky homemade biscuit. Mine are always lopsided so I will definitely try the little thumbprint next time. I always use a little shortening in my dough too.

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    1. Try it..see what happens! Thanks for stopping by Cathy!

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  12. I have a Shirley Corriher recipe that I always use for biscuits; however, I think you've inspired me to change.

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    1. Lael...I like Shirley's biscuit recipe as well! Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting!

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  13. I spotted this on Monique's blog and decided to come for a visit. I have never had success with biscuits and these look wonderful; will be trying these soon.
    Rita

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    1. Well thanks so much for stopping by Rita! Nice to meet you! Try the biscuits...just do not overwork the dough and you will be fine. Be gentle with it! Let me know how you do if you try them!

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  14. these look wonderful...will use my well seasoned 80 year old skillet to bake. Thanks so much for sharing. I will try not to overwork as I usually do in making bread. Texas Lady. (aka Mary)

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    1. Your skillet sounds wonderful Mary! Thanks so much for stopping by!

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  15. Your biscuits look fluffy and light! I have an old cast iron skillet to bake in but have never tried biscuits, will have to change that;-)

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    1. Give the skillet a whirl for biscuits Patty...there is just something special about using it. I always bake my cornbread in it as well!
      Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting!

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  16. This is my first visit to your blog and I wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed it. Not only delicious recipes but lovely photos as well.

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    1. Thank you so much Karen! I am so happy you stopped by!

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  17. Thank you! WOW they came out very good.
    Rita

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    1. Rita I am thrilled they worked out for you and they were enjoyed! Thank you so much for letting me know!

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  18. These look fabulous...I will reserve my next stash of leftover buttermilk for a batch of these :)

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    1. Thanks LIzzy...i freeze my buttermilk in portions so I always have some on hand!

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  19. Ahh, biscuits... I can almost smell them through the screen. I'm watching what I eat before I travel this summer, I want to lose a few so I can gain them back when we're on the road. Dieting is no fun, and nothing could be better than a warm, crumbly, buttery biscuit! Torture me why don't you. ;)

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    1. Sometimes a little cheat is in order....hugs Tori...have a wonderful trip!

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  20. Delicious scones...what a novel idea to bake them in a skillet.
    You always come up with great recipes.
    Shel ♥

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    1. Thank you sweet Shel! I can not take credit for the idea....women in the Southern parts of my country have been doing that for as long as the skillets have been around I suppose. They are just a little bit different than scones....i hope you try them!
      Love to you!
      L xo

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  21. I will try this recipe...I love Alton Brown and scones. and tht it doesnt have so much fat in it! Thank you for bringing us this lovely recipe Linda! :)

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    1. I hope you try them Zurin...not scones but real all American Buttermilk Biscuits...i think you will love them!
      xo

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  22. Thanks Senka...I will check it out!

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  23. Just happened upon your blog and what a fabulous blog you have! I'm going to have to try your biscuit because all I know is scones which we have with jam and cream. I seem to think these biscuits are different.

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    1. Thank you so much for stopping by Marcellina...i hope you enjoy them! They are an American cousin to the scone....let me know if you try them!

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  24. The buttermilk biscuits looks yum. It would be perfect while one sipping coffee or tea.

    Ed Butowsky

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    1. Yes they would be! Thanks so much for stopping by!

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  25. Dear Linda, I am glad to see you are back! These biscuits look wonderful...you can never go wrong with buttermilk biscuits...they complete almost any meal!

    Blessings, Catherine xo

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  26. If these biscuits were any lighter, they'd probably levitate :)
    And I particularly like that you used buttermilk, which I always have on hand and use for most baking projects.

    Happy Thanksgiving to you, Linda!

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    1. You too Marysol! Sorry I am a bit late in my response! Merry Christmas is probably more appropriate by now! Have a happy!

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  27. These biscuits look great - and tools like your iron skillet becomes such treasured items in one's kitchen don't they? I feel the same way about my classic red Creuset!

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  28. They certainly do...thank you for stopping by and commenting!

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  29. Miss your beautiful blog Linda :(
    Think of you often
    Shel

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    1. Thank you dear Shel...i hope to be back soon!
      L xo

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  30. I am so very much in love with Mr. Alton Brown. I have all of this recipe books so as soon as I saw this post I knew I was going to love it. I have this recipe in one of my cook books and have yet to get around to cooking it. Thank you for letting me know that it was amazing.

    My homepage | Online PhD UK Programs

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    1. Thank you for stopping by Lila...These are just about the best biscuits I have ever baked? Hope you like them when you try them!

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  31. Thank you sweetiegirl...soon I will post...
    XO

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  32. These biscuits look like scones, and as I love scones I suppose I'd love them as well.
    I should definitively try :)

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  33. I miss you too, Linda. Just waiting patiently for you to come back.

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  34. I know the need to take a break. I've done the same. Like Cathy I'll wait patiently for your return.

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