The biscuits we had at home when I was a kid came out of a can, and I loved them, but I always wondered what it would be like to have homemade biscuits. I would read about them in books, made in sunlight filled country kitchens by my storybook characters, and I knew I wanted to know that feeling one day. I would grow up to be the Fortune 500 business-owning, high heel power suit wearing, astronaut/doctor/humanitarian/veterinarian/bobsledder who spent her weekends in a gingham dress making biscuits. The fact that I had never seen snow didn’t seem to have any impact whatsoever on my plans.
While those childhood plans didn’t quite pan out exactly the way I’d thought, it’s been a beautiful adventure so far. Any adventure that includes from-scratch biscuits is usually worthwhile.
The first time I made biscuits from scratch was for a picnic. The Godfather and I were recently married, I hadn’t found work yet, and we were between paychecks. We wanted to do something fun that weekend though, and it happened the weather was beautiful and I suggested a picnic since we could pack along food from home and the beautiful outdoors are free for all to enjoy. We didn’t want to wait for a yeast bread, so I thought, “we’re in the South, I’ll make biscuit ham sandwiches!” Never mind that I had no clue how to make a biscuit.
I hopped onto Food Network, my go-to recipe site at the time, searched, created, and it was rather successful for a first time attempt. Enough so that I kept trying, testing, working at it over time, until I found a combination that works for me as my go to buttermilk biscuit recipe.
- 2 cups self rising flour
- 6 tbsp unsalted butter, very cold
- ½ tsp salt
- ¾ cup + 2 tbsp buttermilk
- Preheat your oven to 425 F.
- Mix the salt into the flour. Cut in the butter with two knives or a pastry blender until it looks like small peas.
- Stir in the buttermilk slowly until the dough forms into a shaggy mass.
- Flip the biscuit dough onto a lightly floured surface and gently pat into a circle about ¾" thick.
- Cut biscuits using a biscuit cutter, round cookie cutter, or drinking glass. DO NOT TWIST. Cut with a straight up and down motion. Cut the biscuits as close together as possible. The prettiest biscuits come from the first round of cuts.
- For biscuits with softer edges, place the biscuits about ½" apart in an oven safe baking pan or pie dish. If you are not using stone or cast iron, line the baking sheet with parchment paper. For crisper edges, place the biscuits 1½" apart on a baking sheet.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes until the biscuits are a light golden brown and baked through.
- Remove from the oven and allow to set for 5 minutes before serving.