Serve these for breakfast or use them for hors d'oeuvres, filled with a slice of country ham or some cream cheese with hot-pepper jelly.
Biscuit maker Callie White brushes more butter on top than is called for here, but a tablespoon makes these plenty rich and creamy. She also says it's essential to use White Lily flour to give the biscuits just the right texture.
We found White Lily flour at Balducci's, some Harris Teeter and Williams-Sonoma stores. It also can be ordered through several online gourmet purveyors. Callie White's biscuits can be ordered online at www.calliesbiscuits.com.
Yield: Makes 2-inch biscuits
- 2 cups self-rising flour, preferably White Lily brand, plus more for dusting
- 2 tablespoons salted butter, at room temperature, plus 1 tablespoon melted butter for glazing
- 1/4 cup cream cheese, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon whole or low-fat buttermilk
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Have ready an ungreased baking sheet.
Place the flour in a large mixing bowl. Use 2 forks or your fingers to cut in the butter and cream cheese, making sure not to overwork the dough; there should be small chunks and some loose flour. Make a well in the center of the mixture and add the buttermilk, gradually incorporating it into the flour. The dough will be wet.
Pat a little all-purpose flour on the top of the dough, then flip it out onto a lightly floured surface. Flour the top of the dough lightly; that will make it easy to roll out but keep it moist inside. Roll out the dough to a 1/2-inch thickness (do not overwork it or the biscuits will be tough).
Use a 2-inch biscuit cutter or a similarly sized rim of a drinking glass to cut out biscuits, cutting them as close together as possible. (The key to good biscuits is to avoid having to knead or roll out the dough too many times.) Arrange the biscuits on the baking sheet so that they are just touching. Brush the tops with the melted butter. Bake for 8 to 12 minutes, until slightly golden brown. Serve hot.
Adapted from Callie White of Callie's Charleston Biscuits in Charleston, S.C.
Tested by Jane Black.
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