Monday, November 15, 2010

Biscuits from Grandma's book

I finally got around to Grandma's cook book. Sorry it has taken so long. I decided to just open it up and see where it fell. Baking Powder Biscuits and Shortcakes. I might assume this page was used a lot, it does have several smudges on it, of course the whole book has some sort of something soaked into the pages. It also contains a gem in the form of a clipped newspaper article. Well it might be a gem to someone. It's an article titled Chemical Prevents Alfalfa Bloating.  A fun little story about Poloxalene.   Looking on the back of the clipping an incomplete article notes a date for an upcoming MIA Conference at the Salt Palace.  1972.  Hmm,  I wonder if any of my sisters went. 

One thing of interest on this recipe and it is repeated throughout the book is a note about baking powder. "The amount of baking-powder indicated is correct when using either a tartrate or phosphate baking-powder. With an aluminum baking-powder use one-half the amount specified." I wonder if that is true today? I use aluminum baking powder because it's cheaper. I know it's not as good for you but I'm basically a cheap girl. It also contains Monocalcium Phosphate though so perhaps the basic formulation has changed. It's just not something I want to put the time into to figure out.

These biscuits were basic. Not flaky or layers or anything that made them stand out good. I will stick with my old recipe. It does have all the variations listed after for the various additions or what today would be more traditional scones. (Not Utah Scones)

Baking Powder Biscuits

2 cupfuls flour
4 teaspoonfuls baking-powder
4 tablespoonfuls shortening
1 teaspoonful salt
2/3 cupful milk or water (about)

Cut shortening into sifted dry ingredients. Add liquid to make a soft dough. Roll lightly or pat into a sheet about 1/2 to 1 inch thick, cut into rounds and place on greased baking sheet. Bake in a hot oven of 450º F. for 12-15 mins.

The recipe goes on with variations for Cheese biscuits, Fruit or Nut Biscuits, Orange Biscuits, Peanut Butter Biscuits, Pin-Wheel Biscuits, Caramel or Butterscotch Biscuits, Drop Biscuits, Dumplings for Stews, Shortcake, and Fruit Shortcakes.

I chose to make the Pin-Wheel biscuits which had 2 tsp. melted butter, 1/4 cup sugar, 2 tsp nutmeg or cinnamon. Roll dough into a rectangular sheet 1/4 inch thick. Brush with melted butter, sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon and roll up from long side like jelly-roll. Cut in 3/4 inch slices, lay slices flat on greased pan. bake 20 min. at 450º F.

The Orange Biscuits variation is interesting. It says to dip sugar cubes in orange juice and place one on each biscuit before before baking and sprinkle with orange rind.

1 comment:

Melanie said...

Fascinating! I didn't realize that different types of baking powder would be used in different amounts. I make my own baking powder because I don't like the metal aftertaste of the aluminum. I wonder if I should be using different amounts than the recipes specify...hmmm.

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