Biscuits with Variations
A quick bread that's not just for breakfast, biscuits piping hot from the oven can brighten any meal.
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 to 1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
1/4 cup vegetable shortening
3/4 cup milk
- Preheat oven to 425°F (220°C).
- Combine flour, baking powder, sugar and salt in mixing bowl. Cut shortening into flour mixture with a pastry blender until mixture resembles fine crumbs. Make a well and add milk all at once. Stir quickly with a fork just until dough leaves side of bowl and rounds up into a ball.
- Turn dough onto lightly floured surface. Knead lightly 10 to 12 times. Roll or pat dough 1/2-inch thick. Cut with a floured 2 1/2-inch biscuit cutter; cut dough straight down without twisting. (Uneven pressure will cause biscuits to be asymmetrical.) Place on ungreased baking sheet about 1-inch apart for crusty sides, or touching if your prefer soft sides.
- Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from baking sheet immediately and serve hot.
Makes 10 biscuits.
- Buttermilk Biscuits: Decrease baking powder to 2 teaspoons and add 1/4 teaspoon baking soda with the salt. Substitute buttermilk for the milk, using slightly more than 3/4 cup if buttermilk is thick.
- Cheese Biscuits: Stir 1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese into flour mixture just before adding milk.
- Cornmeal Biscuits: Substitute 1/2 cup cornmeal for 1/2 cup of the flour. Sprinkle cornmeal over biscuits just before baking, if desired.
- Drop Biscuits: Increase milk to 1 cup. Drop dough by tablespoonfuls onto greased baking sheet.
Tip: For quicker, easier biscuits, roll dough into a 1/2 to 3/4-inch thick rectangle and cut evenly into square biscuits. This eliminates having to re-roll the scraps when using a biscuit cutter.