Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Touch of Grace Biscuits II

I wish I remembered baking these biscuits in my first Bread Bible go-round, but when I read the directions, it brought back exactly nothing.  Moreover, the directions didn't make sense to me:  was all the one cup of flour (not self-rising) supposed to go on the biscuits?  Was I supposed to dust off the extra flour or add even more?  My first blog post was of no help whatsoever--there was only one picture (which turned out to look better than my second effort) and no description of the taste or texture, which is what I was interested in.

In the first post, I said I had some self-rising flour, but I couldn't find any White Lily because apparently we are too far north (still true).  I knew I had some self-rising flour in my flour cabinet, so I wasn't worried about that.  Just before I started measuring the flour, I had an uneasy feeling that I'd better check the use-by date because, now that I thought about it, I actually couldn't remember buying any self-rising flour in the recent past.  Uh-oh.  Use by May 7, 2006!  This must be the same bag of flour I bought for the biscuits the first time I made them.  I hate to think how this ten-year-old flour would have performed.  I threw it out, and used a combination of bleached flour, cake flour, baking powder, and salt.

I think that's enough pictures of flour bags for the day.  

This is one of just a few of Rose's recipes that uses vegetable shortening instead of butter.  I'm glad it's not a trend.

All the ingredients after they rest for a few minutes.  As promised, it's a very soft dough, although, thankfully, it seems to have more structure than mashed potatoes.

At this point, I do remember making the biscuits ten years ago.  I remember because when I read the instructions and saw shaping your fingers like a C, I had no idea what she was talking about, but it became clear when I actually did it.  This is the same reaction I had ten years ago.  This time I didn't make the biscuits large enough because I had more than 9.  They looked better when I was a rank amateur.

They're darker and not as high as my 2006 pan of biscuits was.  I like the color, but I wish they were higher.  Now that I taste them, I can sort of see why I didn't try to describe them.  I'm not sure I can describe them now.   They were very soft, fluffy, and tender--almost too tender and soft, especially when warm.  They were hard to break apart (even using the fork tine method) when they were warm, and they lost some of their flavor when they cooled.  Jim loves these biscuits--he really gobbled them up.  Some with butter, some with jam, some with butter and jam, some plain.  He liked them all ways.  I think I prefer a more substantial, flakier biscuit that's rolled out and cut with a biscuit cutter.  But I'm pretty sure there are a few more biscuit recipes in The Bread Bible, as well as a few fabulous scones, so by the time we're done, we'll all have our favorite.  Unless, of course, we forget about them before we get to the end of the book.


Vicki said...

Very glad you posted early! Been mucking about dragging my feet baking these. They look quite nice to me, but I probably have never meat a biscuit I didn't like. Have a wonderful safe trip and please send FB postcards if you connect to wifi whilst you and Jim are across the pond. Kiss Princess Charlotte for us!

Faithy said...

Mine looks like this too! I was expecting higher and flufflier biscuits too. Wow, your self-rising flour of 10 years still ok and no bugs?! Mine would have had lots of flour bugs.

Unknown said...

Hi Marie, your dough looks so much drier than mine. Mine looked almost like pancake batter. But the crumb inside looks very similar. Still I really enjoyed the tenderness of this biscuit. I'm with Jim on this. I could have eaten the whole batch.

Unknown said...

Yes it's funny how sometimes things turn out better when you have no idea what you're doing. But your biscuits look absolutely delicious - that photo at the top is great and you can really see the lovely soft texture.

Patricia @ ButterYum said...

You are so funny. I had an ancient bag of self rising flour in my pantry too, but I know it loses it's effectiveness within a fairly short time after being opened so I pitched it. I completely agree that these are much too soft when warm. Ours fell apart in our hands as we pulled them from the pan. The biscuits we allowed to cool were much easier to handle. If you get a chance, I'd love it if you'd visit my post.

Patricia @ ButterYum

Anonymous said...

Ha, I had a very old bag of rising flour too! I really wanted to use it but chickened out and went out and bought some fresh bleached white flour.

These biscuirs were so different than any I've sampled before that I wasn't sure how my tastebuds were reacting at first - but they really started to grow on me. I wish they had a few less calories though :)

Jenn said...

Marie, you must have still been living in the same house since 2006, otherwise you would have caught the expired flour during packing/moving :).