Cask & Barrel

Baking Powder Biscuits

This recipe is transcribed from one of my Grandmother’s old cook books, given to her by her mother. I’ve written it down here as a way to preserve it, and also because I strongly believe that some dishes are best in their simplest form. When learning to cook anything new, I like to begin with the traditional method before experimenting with my own take on things. All ingredients and instructions are as written in the original text.

Flour, 2 cups
Baking powder, 3 teaspoons
Salt, 1 teaspoon
Shortening, 4 tablespoons
Milk, about 3/4 cup

Sift flour; measure; add baking powder and salt; sift again.

Cut in the shortening with a pastry blender or two knives, blending it until the mixture resembles coarse corn meal.

Stirring in with fork, add enough milk to make soft dough, or until flour leaves sides of bowl and follows fork; continue stirring until all flour disappears.

Turn out on board; knead lightly for about 1/2 minute. Turn smooth side up and pat dough or roll 1/2 inch thick; cut with floured biscuit cutter.

Transfer biscuits to an ungreased baking sheet; place 1 inch apart if crusty biscuits are desired, or close together for softer biscuits with less crust.

Bake in a hot oven (425 F.) 12 to 15 minutes. Makes 14 to 16 2-inch biscuits.

Cheese Biscuits: Cut in 1 cup grated cheese with the shortening and proceed as directed. Or prepare plain biscuit dough, roll into balls 1 1/2 inches in diameter and place in small muffin pans; dot with butter and sprinkle with grated cheese; bake as directed.

Kirk, Dorothy, ed. Woman’s Home Companion Cook Book. New York: P. F. Collier & Son, 1953. Print.

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