Every young girl growing up in the South is expected to master the first kitchen sacrament: making biscuits. I think I was 12 when I decided to make my first batch of biscuits. I dug out my mom’s Victory Cookbook and gathered the ingredients. As luck would have it my Uncle Charlie was visiting and when he heard that I was making biscuits for the first time, he eagerly volunteered to eat them. It was an act of bravery on his part and a pivotal moment in my life as a cook. I was an enthusiastic, but not very experienced, baker and I worked that biscuit dough for all it was worth. The biscuits came out of the oven looking like rocks. When I set the plate down in front of my uncle, he picked one up, smeared some butter on it and popped it in his mouth. As he crunched up the biscuit, my mom started to laugh. Uncle Charlie responded, with a mouthful of stone biscuit, “if any little girl wants to learn to make biscuits, by God, somebody should eat them”. He finished the whole plate. Sometimes love is eating a bad biscuit.
I knew the biscuits were awful but I was encouraged enough to keep trying. Today, I’m happy to say, I make a great biscuit. My recipe has evolved over the years; but here’s the result of my uncle’s act of love all those years ago.
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 3 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup coconut oil (this is the secret ingredient)
- 3/4 cup milk
Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.
In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients.
Stir in the milk until blended and the dough no longer sticks to the side of the bowl.
Biscuit dough should be wet and sticky.
In the same bowl (I hate flour covered countertops) sprinkle the dough with a little extra flour and dust your hands with flour. Gently knead the dough (biscuit dough is sensitive, don’t beat it up). Knead about 10 times, just until you can form a ball of dough.
Place the ball of dough on a silpat mat. Parchment paper or wax paper will also work. With your hands, gently flatten the ball until it is about 2 inches thick. Yes, this is thicker than the recipe books say, but trust me, you’ll like it.
With a 3-inch biscuit cutter, (I used a beer glass) cut out the big thick biscuits. This recipe will make about 6 big, fluffy biscuits.
I just arrange them on the silpat mat, slide it onto my baking sheet and put them in the oven. Or, place the biscuits on an ungreased baking sheet.
Bake for a good 12-15 minutes, or until the biscuits are a beautiful golden brown.
I guarantee you’ll never eat rolled package biscuits again. Ε