Joy the Baker

Dad’s Buttermilk Biscuits

March 26, 2009

Dad's Buttermilk Biscuits

On losing, letting go of little sisters, and warm biscuits:

We never talked about this.  I didn’t know how to bring it up.  The 2009 Bloggies.  Remember?  Best New Blog?  So… I sorta…. kinda…. mostly… didn’t win.  The thing is, I really really wanted to win.  I did.  I played it cool though.  On the outside, I pretended to not care either way.  That was a big fat lie.  But the thing about losing… it’s pretty cool actually… it makes me want to be better.  It also makes me unbelievably grateful for all of your smiling faces.  Fact.

I found myself in a frenzy this morning.  My little sister left for a many month long European adventure.  The thought of her being so far away that I can’t easily call her at two in the morning to scream our favorite Mariah Carey song at her sent me into panic mode.  I calmed myself, safe in the knowledge that my sister deserved some life changing adventures and I am due many presents from far away lands upon her return.

Biscuits.  If I were to hand you a warm biscuit with raspberry jam would you: a)  throw it on the ground and shove me on the floor or b) thank me kindly, gobble the biscuit and give me a giant hug?  If your answer involved shoving me on the floor… well, that’s kinda funny, but throwing biscuits on the floor is just plain rude.  Don’t do it.

Dad's Buttermilk Biscuits

Dad's Buttermilk Biscuits

These Buttermilk Biscuits… well, they must be blessed by the heavens.  I don’t think there’s any other way to explain just how good they are.  They’re best right out of the oven, steaming hot, doused with butter and jam.

My dad has been making this recipe for Buttermilk Biscuits for our family for, exactly, ever.  Incidentally, my sister has been swiping them of the table for as long as I can remember.  They’re simple family goodness.

Dad’s Buttermilk Biscuits

Print this Recipe!

3 cups all-purpose flour

2 Tablespoons sugar

4 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup shortening, cold and cut into cubes

1/4 cup butter, cold and cut into cubes

1 egg, beaten

3/4 cup buttermilk, cold

In a mixing bowl, sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, cream of tartar and salt.  Cut in shortening and butter until mixture resembles coarse meal.  In another bowl, combine egg and milk and beat lightly with a fork.  Add to flour mixture all at once, stirring enough to make a soft dough.

Turn out onto a floured board and knead about 15 times.  Roll or pat out into a 1-inch thickness.  Cut into 2-inch rounds using a biscuit cutter or cut into 2×2-inch squares.  Reshape and roll dough to create more biscuits with excess scraps.    Place on an ungreased baking sheet and bake at 425 degrees F for 12-15 minutes.  Serve immediately.

Dad's Buttermilk Biscuits


91 Comments Add A Comment

  • I am soooo making these this weekend! I hope your sister has a fun (but safe) European adventure!

  • Buttermilk biscuit are the best, and they go with any meal, any time of day! My sister is leaving for Australia for five weeks in May, so I hear ya.. I’m sure they’ll both have a blast (my sister and yours) and they can tell us all about it when they get back :-)

  • I’ve never cooked anything that was made with shortening. Ever. Although I grew up eating many biscuits and always having the shortening in Mom’s cupboard, I’ve never had any in my own. It’s funny how life rolls. I’m going buy myself some shortening and make myself some biscuits! I’m going to dig in to that cardboard container and scoop out that ultra white magic and recreate a bit of family history. Thanks for the push from the past this morning.

  • I have some buttermilk that’s about to expire in the fridge so this is the perfect recipe today. Thank you :) They look so good. I hope your sister has the time of her life on her travels.

  • Biscuits make my heart sing. Seriously. And on a rainy day like today, heart-singing sounds awesome. By the way, I was sooo excited to send you my picture of me and my teacup (such a great idea by the way), but I got sick and was in no mental state (or photogenic state) to do so. Next time, I’m all. over. it. And I’ll be dealing with my own sister’s-out-of-the-country-for-longer-than-I’m-happy-with when mine heads to Africa and France. I feel your pain. I have a suggestion – soothe your soul with biscuits. There’s this awesome blogger I know who has a great dad-approved recipe.

  • Those look so good! I am drooling, I love any hot fresh carb,!

  • Wow, these look perfect! How weird is it that I grew up baking with my southern grandma and still to this day don’t have a good buttermilk biscuit recipe to turn to?? I’ll give these a try.

    Do you ever serve your biscuits w/anything savory? Like sausage gravy or stuffed with eggs and bacon?

  • I made biscuits with chicken gravy just this past weekend for my visiting family—must be something about biscuits and family that go together, huh?

    About losing. I took a gander at the bloggie awards and was irked. It seemed like certain blogs won all the awards—it would’ve been nice for them to share the glory, I thought. Your blog is already a spendid creation, so just relax and have fun (though I’m victim to the I’m-never-good-enough mentality, too, so I have no room to talk).

  • Welcome to your sister!!! I hope she likes Europe so so much to convince you to come, too! You could enjoy a lot of incredible present. Every country here it’s a world apart, so a lot of things to know and to bring home! In the meantime take comfort with us, smiling faces :)
    Why should someone throw away this wonderful biscuits? Take my huge hugs for these,
    cheers Martina

  • Felt the very same when my sister went to Afghanistan on a months long humanitarian trip. Terrible, and the worry wart in me became enormous!! Hope your sister has a wonderful and safe trip.

    The bisquits look marvelous, and we’ll be trying them tonight!

    ~B

  • my order of events: gobbling cookie, thanks, hug.

    always the cookie first, always.

  • I am so glad you are posting these. I have been on a hunt for the best homemade biscuit and have been so sad to find that every single one I’ve made so far has been “ok,” but not nearly as good as the ones from a can. Horror, I know! Especially when the kitchen is covered in flour and my husband is like “why didn’t you just buy the ones at the store?” Erghhh!! Anyways, I have loved everything I’ve ever tried from your site though, and can’t wait to try these out!

  • Yep…this weekend’s breakfast. Your sister will have a wonderful time and she will be forever changed by her experiences in Europe. And yes, presents are expected. ;)

  • Never mind them, Joy. You’re a winner with us!

    Thank you for the blog. I’m loving your recipes and your fun approach to life.

  • Mmmm….they look so good, and the thought of a steaming hot, butter and jam covered biscuit is very enticing indeed having woken up to very grey damp weather. These may be just the thing for a post-work comfort snack. Thanks Joy!

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