Yield: 6 to 8 | Total time: 25 min
I've finally found a perfect biscuit recipe thanks to Chef Suvir Saran and his book, "Masala Farm: Recipes and Tales from and Uncommon Life in the Country." Moist and tender with butter and buttermilk, these bake up so beautifully every time. I've been eating them for years at Masala Farm but only started making them myself for the past year or so. They are delicious with a bit of salted butter, honey, and/or homemade jam. They also pair well with fried eggs, gravy, fresh berries and cream, or a few slices of cheese and cucumber. I usually make one batch, but my uncle was visiting from New Orleans and bought me a 16-inch cast iron skillet (originally to make crawfish bisque); the skillet is large enough for two batches of these biscuits, which is what I always end up making and there are rarely any leftovers.
Suvir calls for self-rising flour, but I've included here a version using all-purpose flour and baking soda + salt. He also calls for lard, but I usually just add more butter or sometimes duck fat. Recipe adapted from Suvir Saran; "Masala Farm: Recipes and Tales from an Uncommon Life in the Country" (Chronicle Books)
- 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon fine-grain salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 5 tablespoons lard, duck fat (or unsalted butter)
- 1 1/4 cups buttermilk
- Preheat oven to 425°.
- Whisk together 3 cups of the flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Blend 1/2 cup of the butter and the lard (or more butter) into the flour, using a pastry blender, a knife, or your fingers until mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. Pour 3/4 of the buttermilk into the bowl and cut it into the dough using a knife or fork. Continue adding buttermilk until dough is no longer dry and holds together but is not too wet and sticky. The amount will depend on the amount of humidity in the air.
- Gently press the dough together to form a large ball. Melt the remaining 1/2 cup butter in a 10-inch cast iron skillet. Tear off small pieces of dough, dipping hands into the remaining flour, and form about 8 equal balls/biscuits and place in the skillet and turn the buttered side up. Bake 22 to 25 minutes; tops should be golden brown.
Date Published: June 30, 2015
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