Saturday, November 21, 2009

Mama Blanche's Biscuits

The story goes like this: my grandmother was staying with her new in-laws shortly after marrying my grandfather (country people from Mississippi; she's a city girl from Memphis). When she got up in the morning, Mama Blanche (my grandfather's mother) wanted to know what my grandmother wanted for breakfast. The answer? Chocolate cake! That must have been a surprise to Mama Blanche, and she no doubt wondered what on earth her precious boy was going to eat if his new wife wanted cake for breakfast. I can attest that my grandmother is now an excellent cook! This is a recipe she got from her mother-in-law, my great-grandmother, and I never knew it wasn't my grandmother's own recipe until I asked her for it for this blog!

These are "short biscuits"--drier and more crumbly than those you can buy frozen in the grocery store. They're great with soup and the perfect biscuit to make if you are hoping to make genuine (and delicious) Southern cornbread dressing.

Mama Blanche's Biscuits

  • 2 c. flour plus ample for board/rolling out
  • 2 t. baking powder
  • 1/4 t. baking soda
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1/2 c. shortening
  • 3/4 c. buttermilk (roughly--this is one those "add until it's the right texture" things)
  1. Mix dry ingredients. Cut in shortening. Add buttermilk until a moist dough forms--not wet, but too moist to handle much.
  2. Sprinkle board liberally with flour and turn dough out onto it. Sprinkle dough with enough more flour to handle/roll out.
  3. Roll out and cut into little circles (the recipe is vague here--I remember them being fairly petite in both height and width).
  4. Bake. (vague here, too--my grandmother said 400 degrees or so). Time will be short, but will depend on big the biscuits are. They should be lightly browned on top.

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