Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Best Biscuits

When it's below zero and blizzarding (don't laugh, we've had plenty of that this year), I need comfort food. It's not just to make me feel better about being stuck indoors; I need calories for survival. Bring on the fat and bring on the biscuits! Any good Southerner will tell you that the best comfort food is her grandmother's biscuits, but a true southern grandma's biscuit methods are shrouded in mystery. She can toss in flour, scoop up lard with her fingers at random, and pour in buttermilk without measuring. Grandma cannot convey how this heap of dough transforms into fluffy, buttery, melt-in-your-mouth divinity, and my mom has complained that when she does the same the results are bland, white rocks.

My dear grandma hasn't baked her biscuits in years, but I still remember when she came to take care of us when I was in sixth grade while my parents were away. When we got home from school in the afternoon she had a full supper of biscuits, meat, and veg hot and waiting. I never hope to recreate her masterpieces, but I did recreate a reasonable facsimile by following this recipe from Southern Living. I substituted all-purpose flour with baking powder and salt, but otherwise I followed the folding directions precisely. Scarfing one down hot out of the oven, Ickie pronounced them the best he's ever had.

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