These lush, tender biscuits, developed by Teri Yonan Beasley, have crisp edges, thanks to butter in the skillet and a very hot oven. Like all biscuits, they are at their best served warm, with homemade preserves and more butter.
If you don't have White Lily flour, which has a lower protein content, combine 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour with 1/4 cup cake flour.
Servings: 6 very large biscuits
- 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, for the skillet
- 1 3/4 cups sifted White Lily flour
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 teaspoons aluminum-free baking powder, such as Rumford brand
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 cup cold vegetable shortening, cut into small cubes
- 1 cup cold buttermilk
Position an oven rack in the middle of the oven; preheat to 500 degrees.
Melt the butter in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-low heat. Keep it hot on the stove until you're ready to bake the biscuits.
Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl. Add the sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt, and mix well. Add the shortening and toss to coat. Working quickly, use a fork or your fingers to cut the shortening into the flour until the mixture resembles large peas.
Make a well in the center of the mixture and add the buttermilk, stirring with light, quick strokes just until the dough is combined. Do not overwork. The dough will be very wet.
Use a large spoon to drop the dough into the hot skillet, forming 6 mounds spaced evenly apart. Immediately turn each biscuit over to coat with butter and transfer the skillet to the middle oven rack. Reduce the temperature to 475 degrees. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, until golden brown on top and puffed. Serve immediately.
Adapted from "The Fearless Chef," by Andy Husbands and Joe Yonan (Adams Media, 2004).
Tested by Joe Yonan.
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