Buttermilk biscuits with honey butter

Buttermilk biscuits are hard. Or they can be. Literally.

King Daddy’s Granny Belle made extremely tender buttermilk biscuits. King Daddy never bothered to stand at her shoulder and learn how. And, of course, in my family nobody cooked much let alone made biscuits. So I had no frame of reference.

The intuition in making biscuits for those who have no experience is to roll them out. Re-roll them and basically roll the crap out of them. This occurred on a regular basis when we were cooking breakfast at church every Sunday. And they came out as dense as the proverbial hockey puck.

And then I learned through much research and asking people who actually know how to make them that you don’t even have to look at a rolling pin. You work the dough in approximately the same way you apply talcum powder to a baby’s butt. Gently. Just pat it gently into shape.

So I finally took a class in biscuit making at Sur La Table. And there I learned the frozen butter trick which you’ll see in their recipe below. And I feel as though I have this down now.

These buttermilk biscuits are super tender. They don’t acquire the crusty brown tops that some biscuits sport. But I don’t like that anyway. I feel accomplished. And the honey butter is a bonus. Don’t leave that out.

Buttermilk Biscuits with Honey Butter (Sur La Table)


2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon granulated sugar

1 stick unsalted butter, frozen

1 cup cold buttermilk

1 large egg, beaten

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a rimmed quarter-baking sheet with parchment or use a 9×9 metal baking pan sprayed with oil.

Add the flour, baking powder and salt to a large bowl. Whisk to combine. Grate the butter using the largest holes on a grater into the flour and mix with a fork to coat the butter with the flour. Make a well in the center and add the buttermilk and egg, using the fork to mix until the mixture forms large clumps and starts to come together. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and pat into a 1-inch-thick rectangle. Using a 4-inch biscuit cutter cut out the rounds and transfer them to the baking sheet or pan.

Refrigerate for 10-15 minutes and then bake until cooked through, 12-14 minutes.

Honey Butter

1 stick unsalted butter, softened

¼ cup honey

¼ teaspoon salt

Combine and serve with the biscuits.

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