Grandma Cille’s Buttermilk Biscuits

One of the most memorable times I shared with my great-grandma Lucille, was watching her make her famous biscuits. She always kept her biscuit container stocked with the best biscuits ever. She strategically kept the container on top of the ice box so that her grands couldn’t get to it and devour them without approval. Every time I walked by I would think of a way to steal one without getting caught. Then I remembered that I needed to heat the cane syrup that accompanied the biscuits. There was no way that could be done without her knowing.

There are only a couple people in my family who have attempted to recreate her recipe. I’m pretty sure my Aunt Janell, her daughter, is the only person that will come close to making them the exact same way, but I think my version is pretty awesome. These biscuits aren’t your typical pretty, perfectly risen version. She was not concerned with their appearance but rather how you felt when you ate them. The taste ruled!

The recipe is super easy but technique is key. When mixing the shortening in, do it in a freezer and with your hands. My grandma didn’t use a pastry cutter so I don’t use one either. For this reason, I start with a fork and then finish with my hands in the freezer to keep the shortening from getting soft. Yes, I stand in the freezer with the door open. 🙂

Make these babies for your next breakfast with some creamy grits and bacon. If you can find cane syrup, nuke it for 15 seconds and dip the biscuit in the warm syrup. Thank me later!

Ingredients

3 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup shortening or 1 stick of butter
1 1/4-1/2 cups of buttermilk
Cast iron skillet

Instructions

Preheat oven to 425. Place the cast iron skillet in the oven. Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and salt. Place the bowl in a freezer and cut in the shortening or butter with a fork. After the shortening is mostly incorporated, finish mixing in the shortening with your hands until all the flour and shortening is mixed together. Take the bowl out of the freezer and mix in the buttermilk. Start with a cup and increase to a cup and a half until you get the dough soft enough and it forms a ball. The consistency should be doughy but not sticky. Put the bowl back in the freezer for about 2-3 minutes. Take the dough out and place the dough on a floured surface and roll out to about an inch thick and use a biscuit cutter or a cup(this is what I use) to cut round biscuits. If you have left over dough repeat the steps to get more biscuits. Only do this once as you don’t want the dough to get warm. Take the cast iron out of the oven and put the biscuits in the skillet. Bake for 12-14 minutes until golden brown. Enjoy!

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Road Trip: Philly and Williamsburg

I get easily excited whenever food is involved. Each month I’ve been stoked to share my restaurant and featured recipes with you, however this month is special. I decided to take a couple days off and explore the southeast region of our country. My trip starts in my city, Philadelphia and ends in DC. I will be visiting Williamsburg, VA; Raleigh, NC; Charleston, SC; and Savannah, GA. I view this road trip as a way of revitalizing my roots. I am a Southern bell at heart but admittedly forget that at times as a result of heavily saturating my life in all things “Philly”. I will try to post an entry each night of my four day tour.

Philadelphia: Honey’s Sit ‘n Eat

This is a very popular restaurant in the Northern Liberties section of Philadelphia, specifically for their brunch. The menu is inspired by the south with a Jewish flare, featuring items such as biscuits, latkes, and challah french toast.

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I was honored that Back of the House Manager, Shauna Alvarez, took the time to come out and greet me.

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Three egg omelette with spinach, mushroom and turkey bacon, biscuit, and a potato and cheese latke with applesauce

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Breakfast Bomb: Buttermilk pancake stuffed with scrambled eggs and bacon with a side of homefries

Williamsburg, VA: Dog St. Pub

My honey was recently accepted into the College of William and Mary’s Mason school of business for their MBA program. Full scholarship, might I add (in my very proud voice). We decided to visit Williamsburg on this trip to further explore the city and its offerings. The Associate Director of MBA Admissions, Randy, was kind enough to give us a tour of the campus and local residences. The campus has such a colonial feel, as expected in this town. I am looking forward to visiting Shonn as I am already in love with this town. We decided to try the Dog St. Pub as recommended by Randy.This gastropub is a very local spot with good eats at affordable prices. It just so happens they were running a special. Three sliders with a paired beer for a whopping $9. Score!

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Extensive bottle list

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Fried green tomatoes with arugula, goat cheese, and bacon

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Sliders: Lettuce, pickle, and cheddar, and trellis sauce; carmelized onions, ham, and cheddar; bacon, american cheese, and a fried egg

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Beer flight: Alewerk’s Colonial Wheat, Smartmouth Alter Ego, Alewerk’s Drake Trail IPA

The experience on day one has set the bar high for the remainder of the trip. Looking forward to the other cities!