My husband’s first comment was “Now THESE are GOOD!” These biscuits are very light, as you can see, tender, but not crumbly. Even the ones I patted out to use the scraps were tender. The dough is very easy to work with, I sprinkle my board with flour I keep in a shaker for making pasta.
If I’m in a hurry, I just cut my biscuits into squares with a sharp bench knife. If you use a cutter or knife, be sure to cut straight down; do not twist, to get a good even rise and that “split” in the middle of your biscuit.
This very basic recipe is the same in both the 1950 Betty Crocker Picture Cookbook and the Farm Journal "Homemade Bread" 1969.
Never-Fail Baking Powder Biscuits
2 cups Flour, All-purpose – sifted (9 ounces)
1 tablespoon Baking Powder
1 teaspoon Salt
1/4 cup Shortening
3/4 cup Milk
Sift dry ingredients together. Cut in shortening until mixture resembles coarse meal or crumbs.
Make a hollow in the flour-shortening mixture and stir in enough milk to make a soft dough that leaves the sides of the bowl and sticks to the mixing fork. Don't overmix.
Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead with the heel of the hand 10 to 12 times. Gentle kneading is an important step, to produce good volume, fine flaky texture and good shape and crust. Overkneading with a heavy hand will give your biscuits a tough texture.
Roll 3/4" thick. Cut with a 2 1/2" cutter; place close together on a baking sheet for soft sides, 1" apart for crusty sides on ungreased baking sheet. I use parchment paper. Bake in very hot oven (450°) for 10-12 minutes. Serve at once.
If using self-rising flour, omit baking powder and salt.
For drop biscuits, increase the milk from 3/4 cup to 1 cup.
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Home Canning, Jam and Jelly Making, and Pickle Basics
We live a lot like our folks did in the 40's and 50's - baking, gardening, canning, cooking from scratch, hanging up the wash, having coffee with friends, sharing good books, taking a Sunday drive in the country.We don't feel like we're giving up anything.