Thursday, April 21, 2016

Welcome to biscuits

Biscuits are important y'all. If you are not living south of the Mason Dixon Line, east of the Mississippi you might not know this. You might think they come from a can. For almost a year Tractor Man let me make biscuits from a can. He, adorably, called them "whomping biscuits" because you can get the can open by whomping it on the edge of the counter. I have never seen anyone do this, and when I tried I chipped the laminate edge on his/our counter. After a year he suggested I make "scratch biscuits."
Actually backtrack. I made my "drop biscuits" once. I never thought about biscuits having much flavor, more of them being a delivery system for yummy things like gravy. (Which I, alarmingly, made from a packet as opposed to making from some magic that happens in a skillet after you cook sausage, but that's a whole other post.) The point is "My Biscuits" were swiftly rejected and whomping continued for a while.
On to scratch biscuits. Besides Tractor Man, who does know how to cook, I had another source. I work with a man who used to own a restaurant. We will call him Billy. And Billy can cook! So I ask him for his "biscuit recipe" and he laughs. "You take some self rising flour, some Crisco and some buttermilk. Mix them until it feels just right. Don't overwork. The time and temperature will vary based on your oven. Just make them hot enough and cook them until they start to gold." Um... I need measurements! Nope. You don't make good ole southern biscuits with measurements. You take those three things and mix them just right.
So I decide this will have to be a hands on lesson with Tractor Man. He's a really good teacher and my first batch was the best biscuits I had ever made. They didn't rise super well and they didn't have enough tang, but they were good. Second batch was better. Third was hardly edible. Biscuits are hard. And easy. I can now make exactly how many I need, consistently. In my oven the correct temp is 425 by the way. There is still some quality variation, but it's always good. They go great with my homemade jelly and jam. Which is, again, a whole other story.
You need to remember how important biscuits are when I tell you a short story in my next post. Very important. LINK
But for now, blog posts are better with photos so:

Welcome to my severely overcrowded veggie boxes.

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