11.19.2016

Old-fashioned Goodness

In the late 1980's, my pianist friend Patrick was close by in the Berkshires visiting friends at Tanglewood.

Thanks to my friend Andrea (The Kitchen Lioness) for the wonderful towel!
I was invited to their cottage for lunch on a beautiful summer day.

It is hard for me to admit, but I cannot remember what they served for lunch, but the side of Angel Biscuits was unforgettable.

Angel Biscuits are a Southern specialty, and a variation on buttermilk biscuits. They are leavened with a combination of yeast, baking powder, and baking soda. I guess the three leavening agents make them light as angels' wings?

They are light - and soft and flaky. And they can't be beat.

They rise in the fridge, and can be made all at once, or a few at a time by continuing to store leftover dough in the fridge. You can add herbs, or black pepper to the dough for fun variations.

Because the dough is made a day in advance, they are perfect for simplifying preparation of your holiday meals.

~ David

Angel Biscuits

1 1/2 teaspoons dry yeast 
2 tablespoons warm water (110°F)
3 tablespoons sugar
2 cups well-shaken buttermilk
1 cup vegetable oil
5 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda

Dissolve yeast in the warm water in a large bowl; let sit for a few minutes, allowing the yeast to proof. Add sugar, buttermilk, and oil; whisk to blend.

Mix together remaining ingredients in another large bowl. Using a wooden spoon, stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Cover with cling wrap and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat oven to 450°F.

Take as much dough as you want (it will be sticky), and knead lightly on a well-floured board. Roll out to 1/2-inch thick, and cut into rounds with a biscuit cutter. Knead together the scraps and repeat rolling and cutting. Alternatively, rollout the dough into a rectangle and cut into squares, as I have done today - this way, there will be no need to gather and re-roll the scraps.

Place biscuits on an ungreased baking sheet and place in preheated oven for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve hot from the oven.

Makes approximately 30 biscuits.




28 comments:

  1. I must try these; I'm a big fan of things that are prepared in advance!

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  2. I grew up on a steady stream of pillowy biscuits and truly believe good biscuits equals perfect happiness! The make ahead concept you present here mean warm biscuits could be as easy as an everyday pop tart, but much better. GREG

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    1. Greg - I agree! Warm biscuits are lovely, to be sure, and when they involve almost no work, they are lovelier.

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  3. A lovely recipe, David. I think we know these as scones.

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    1. Liz - my family's scones are very different. They have no yeas or baking soda - only baking powder. They mostly have currants in them, but we have had them plain, too. Let me know about your family's recipe!

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  4. I'm craving butter. Good American salted butter. Think I'll make these the minute we get home and have them with a BIG FAT steak!

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    1. Laura - One of things I hear most when people have traveled to Asia is how much they miss butter! Maybe we need to invent ways to travel with it!

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  5. These look perfect, David! I would love to have one with lots of butter and honey! Definitely a great choice for holiday meals :)

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    1. I love biscuits and honey, Marcella - one of my favorite breakfasts or afternoon snacks!

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  6. Hi David, never heard of angel wing biscuits, they sound wonderful. Great idea to add herbs or pepper. I like the fact that can be made a day ahead. Happy holidays!

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    1. Thanks, Cheri! I think our next batch will be made with tons of cracked pepper! Devilish angel biscuits, to be sure!

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  7. I have never heard of angel biscuits; they sound delicious. I'd love to cover one in loads of butter and eat it!

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    1. I think these biscuits are particular to the American South. Most of my friends up North have never heard do them! And, yes, tons of butter is just what need!

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  8. David - my mouth literally started watering. Yummy! That real is old fashioned goodness.

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    1. Thanks, Carolyne! Why is it that we all love biscuits so much?

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  9. David, I've always meant to make angel biscuits, but never have. I make all kinds of yeast breads and rolls and, of course, baking powder biscuits; so, of course, any time I contemplate angel biscuits I go with one or the other instead of both in the one biscuit! I often make square biscuits so, as you say, there's no need to reroll. These look so good!

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    1. I hope you give these a try next time, Jean! One thing I like about cutting the biscuits into squares is how th shapes are all just a little different - it's fun and so much easier!

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  10. The texture of this looks absolutely perfect -- and with the melting butter - oh my! I want it! I hope you had a lovely Thanksgiving! xo

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    1. We had a lovely Thanksgiving, Valentina - thanks, and I hope you did, as well! Hot biscuits with butter (and honey) may be one of my favorite comfort foods!

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  11. Oh wow! I've never heard of these before, but now I truly want to make them! Yeast and buttermilk sounds fantastic! Hope you had a lovely Thanksgiving, David!

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    1. This biscuit sort of combines the best of them all, Christina - but the yeast flavor is what makes them so appealing to me.

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  12. I like that you don't shy away from the butter, David. Now that's how you're meant to butter! I think I'd be sneaking on a little berry jam and clotted cream, as well.

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    1. Shy away from my best friend, John? Never! And I am looking forward to some clotted cream in a few weeks in the UK. The real thing, not the imported stuff we get here.

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  13. I love the idea of being able to bake a few at a time! And mixing in herbs--delightful!

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  14. Thanks for the recipe, David! I made these for Thanksgiving. I loved that the dough can be made ahead - one less thing to do the day of!
    Hope your TG was wonderful. Happy holidays to you and Mark. :)

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    1. I hope you enjoyed them, Cathleen - and that you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Ours was blessedly quiet, which was just what I needed after a busy fall. Happy holidays to you and yours, as well!

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Thank you for taking the time to leave me a note - I really appreciate hearing from you and welcome any ideas you may have for future posts, too. Happy Cooking!

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