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Saturday, March 28, 2009

On a Quest For...


Perfection...something I have continuously strived for my entire life only never to achieve! Sounds pretty dismal, but not really. Because I have ultimately realised that shooting for perfection seems to always bring out my best efforts. And by doing my best...I tend to have no self-judgments or regrets. Furthermore, I refuse to give up, therefore I am forever and always On A Quest For the perfect whatever!

For instance, lately I've been On A Quest For the perfect biscuit. You, my friend, may not even know what the perfect biscuit tastes like because most restaurants, as well as, home cooks these days tend to conveniently purchase those really bad prepackaged or canned things at the grocery store. OK, I've been guilty of that too. But being the persistent imperfect perfectionist (PIP) that I am, I also have been attempting to bake the perfect biscuit for many years.

This dilemma has proven to be a hit and miss type of situation because I'm a RachelRaysortofcook. That means I have been cooking since I was about 12 years old and I do not measure or follow directions very well. Because of this, my biscuits have not always been the rich and flaky creations we all love with tons of real butter and strawberry preserves on the side. Sometimes they are just OK, and many times they are great bird food. Finally, after many years I have discovered the best and closest to perfect recipe for biscuits and will share that with you right now! The secret is to precisely follow the critical areas (emphasized in bold italics) and whatever you do, don't Rachael Ray it!!!

2 CUPS ALL PURPOSE FLOUR, SIFTED
1 1/2 TEASPOONS SUGAR, SIFTED
1/2 TEASPOON BAKING SODA, SIFTED
1 TEASPOON BAKING POWDER, SIFTED
1/4 TEASPOON SALT, SIFTED
1/2 STICK BUTTER, COLD, UNSALTED
3/4 CUP BUTTERMILK OR SOUR MILK* RECIPE BELOW

Sift the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into bowl. With your fingers, rub in the cold butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. All at once stir in the buttermilk or sour milk and with a spoon mix just until all the ingredients are moistened and a dough forms. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead only 4-5 times. Roll to 1/2 inch thickness using a 2 inch cutter, reforming and recutting the scraps. Arrange the biscuits 2 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake in a 400 degree oven 13-16 minutes, or until they are well risen and the tops are golden brown. *Sour Milk Recipe - Combine 2 teaspoons of lemon juice or vinegar with plain milk. Let it set for a few minutes to curdle.


So, my friend, if you haven't yet discovered the perfect biscuit, you are now able to have the best you will ever taste, if you only follow the simple instructions...the hardest thing in the world to do sometimes.