Ok.  So it’s kind of a toss up as to what brings me more joy here . . . being in the kitchen with the kids, or these biscuits.  I’ll say once more . . . there’s a time and a place for a paleo, real food, sugar-free diet.  Summer vacation is not that time.  Meaning we continue to enjoy our favourite treats in moderation.  (Just to be really clear on my stance on all of this . . . even though we’re on vacation, breakfast and lunches hold true to my diet principles.  Dinner and the dessert that follows involve treats in moderation.)

The husband and I are on dinner duty again tonight and really what compliments a summer dinner of barbecued steak, roasted potatoes (with mushrooms and broccoli rounding out the meal) more than a dessert of strawberry shortcake???  Especially when those strawberries are the last of the ontario strawberry season, so red and ripe and juicy they will ooze their juices all over the freshly whipped cream???  Well, I couldn’t think of anything.

So, this morning, we got to baking our biscuits.  In my world, the ideal biscuit should be tender, should have risen well in the baking process, and of course, taste good.  And the ideal biscuit recipe should of course make enough that there are sufficient biscuits leftover to serve with eggs the next morning.  I think the following recipe ticks all those boxes! They’re a snap to whip up, and the recipe doubles easily so you can have LOTS of leftovers (they freeze really well and defrost equally well for a tea-time treat later in the week).

The one little tip I have for these is, when you place the uncooked biscuits on the tray, place them right beside each other.  This is supposed to help them to rise even more!

Oh, and if you don’t have buttermilk, Just at a teaspoon or so of white vinegar to regular milk.  This will sour it enough and provide enough acidity to allow the biscuits to rise.  BUT, if you do happen to come into fresh buttermilk as I have on occasion (thanks Coach!), it makes this recipe extra tasty!

Perfect Tea Biscuits

  • Servings: 1 1/2 dozen
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 3 cups All Purpose flour (organic is preferable)
  • 4 tsp baking powder (honestly, I forgot to add this in today in all the commotion in the kitchen and the biscuits turned out just fine . . . but I would recommend adding it in)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 6 tbsp white sugar
  • 1/3 cup very cold butter cut into small cubes
  • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk (or regular milk with 1 tsp white vinegar added in)
  • 1 tsp salt

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 (use the Convection Bake setting if you have it, if not, just set it to 450)
  2. In a big bowl, combine all the dry ingredients and mix with a whisk.
  3. Toss the butter into the bowl and, using your fingers, mush the butter around in the flour mixture so the butter ends up being pea-sized and coated in flour.  Don’t over-work the dough at this point – meaning, it’s ok (and even better) if there are small chunks of butter in the dough (when the butter heats and the water in it evaporates, the height of the biscuits will increase).
  4. Pour in the milk, and mix it in using a large spatula.  Keep stirring in a folding motion until all the milk has been incorporated.  At this point, you can get your hands back into the dough and do a final mix with your hands.
  5. Throw some extra flour on your work surface, and turn the dough out onto your table.  Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough to about a 3/4″ thickness.  (Again the thicker the biscuits is before it goes into the oven, the higher it will end up being).
  6. Cut the biscuits using either a round cookie cutter, a glass, or a biscuit cutter, and place them, right next to each other, on a baking sheet.
  7. Bake for 10-15 minutes depending on just how big your biscuits are (obviously they will take closer to 15 minutes if they are big and thick).
  8. Let cool and enjoy!