Buttermilk ice cream! I made it once, with buttermilk from the local dairy, but I’m not sure if it was the “real” buttermilk this article from the New York Times Dining section discusses. Still, it was great, and I would love to try it with premium buttermilk.
Tag Archives: Buttermilk
I am a sucker for a biscuit recipe. I’ll try them all out, even though I’ve worked out a consistently successful master recipe for quick biscuits and discovered the best buttermilk biscuit recipe, courtesy of Cook’s Illustrated. Now, Cook’s Illustrated has passed on the recipe for best drop buttermilk biscuits in the November issue, and of course, I had to try them.
The main difference between the drop biscuits and the just plain best buttermilk biscuits is that the drop biscuits are significantly easier to make. There is no messing about with the food processor or trying to shape the dough into balls. This recipe relies on mixing melted and cooled butter with the buttermilk, so that the butter forms into clumps, producing the same effect as pulsing or cutting cold butter into a regular biscuit dough. The resulting dough can then be dropped onto the baking pan, rather than shaped or cut, shaving some time off what was already a fairly quick recipe. Just beware of making your “drops” too big, as I did, or you’ll wind up with fewer biscuits that require longer baking time, although they will still be good.
The other big difference is that this is the only biscuit recipe I have tried that requires 1 full stick of butter (plus 2 tablespoons for brushing on top). My other recipes only call for 4 tablespoons. With that much butter, of course they are going to be good! They are just not going to be that good for you. You’ve been warned: Even though these biscuits are easier to make, they should probably be consumed in moderation.
Here’s the verdict: They are delicious. Big, flaky, moist — these are everything biscuits should be. My husband declared them “the best biscuits he’s ever had at home.” Enjoy.
Best Buttermilk Drop Biscuits
Yields: 12 biscuits, if you’re careful about apportioning out the dough
Time to make: ~25 minutes
- 2 cups flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. sugar
- ¾ tsp. salt
- 1 stick + 2 tbsp. butter
- 1 cup buttermilk
- parchment paper
- Preheat the oven to 475 degrees.
- Melt the 1 stick butter and let cool about 5 minutes.
- Whisk together the dry ingredients.
- In a separate bowl, combine the melted butter and the buttermilk, and stir until clumps form.
- Stir the liquid into the dry ingredients until just incorporated and the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Using a ¼ cup dry measure, scoop out and drop 12 balls of dough onto the baking sheet (this is easier if you spray the measuring cup with nonstick cooking spray).
- Bake until the tops are golden brown, about 14 minutes.
- Let cool on a wire rack.
- Meanwhile, melt the remaining 2 tbsp. butter and brush the tops of the biscuits with the butter before serving.
Notes: This recipe is from the November-December 2007 issue of Cook’s Illustrated Magazine.
These are truly the best biscuits I have ever made. They epitomize what I look for in a good Southern-style biscuit. They are buttery, fluffy, golden in color and definitely not wimpy — equally able to pair with fried chicken for dinner or form the foundation of a scrambled egg sandwich for breakfast. I tell you, they are dangerous to have around the house. After my husband and I ate three each, I had to foist the rest off on co-workers in deference to our waistlines.
Yields: 12 biscuits
Time to make: ~45 minutes
What you need:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp. double-acting baking powder
- 1 tbsp. sugar
- 1 tsp. salt
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- 4 tbsp. cold butter, cubed
- 1½ cups buttermilk
- 2 tbsp. butter, melted
- food processor
- 1 cup flour, distributed in rimmed baking sheet
- 9-inch round cake pan, sprayed with nonstick cooking spray
- ¼ cup dry measure, sprayed with nonstick cooking spray
- Preheat the oven to 500 degrees
- In the food processor, pulse together the flour, baking powder, sugar, salt and baking soda just to combine
- Scatter the butter cubes over the dry ingredients
- Pulse until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal
- Transfer to a bowl, add the buttermilk and stir until just incorporated
- Using the dry measure, scoop out a level amount of dough and drop it onto the baking sheet to form 12 evenly sized mounds
- Dust the tops of the dough pieces with some flour
- With floured hands, pick up each piece of dough and coat with flour
- Gently shape into a ball
- Shake off the excess flour and place the dough in the prepared cake pan
- Repeat with the remaining pieces; arrange 9 balls around the outside of the cake pan and the 3 remaining balls in the center
- Brush the tops with the melted butter
- Bake 5 minutes
- Reduce the oven temperature to 450 degrees and bake until the biscuits are a deep golden brown, about 15 minutes more
- Cool in the pan a couple of minutes, then invert onto a dish towel and break apart
- Cool a few minutes more before serving, if you can wait
Note: This recipe is from Cook’s Illustrated Magazine, July-Aug. 2004.