Touch of Grace biscuit question
Posted: 29 December 2008 08:19 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I just got the Bread Bible for Christmas and tried Touch-of-Grace biscuits as my first recipe from it.  When I made the dough to the recipe I ended up with way more like a pancake batter than “mashed potatoes” as Rose described it should look like.  When I picked that up with an ice cream scoop and dropped it into the cup of AP flour to coat it the goop just disappeared into a bunch of pieces.  I was unable to pick it up or form it.  After messing with it for a while I just added that extra cup of AP flour to the batter which thickened it up and made it more like mashed potatoes like she described, still wet and sticky, but now scoopable.  Once I dropped those into yet more flour I did end up with biscuits that tasted great (probably because of all the sugar), but weren’t so light and fluffy and were even still a little moist in the middle even after cooking them to 190F in the center. 

Is it possible that the flour proportions are wrong in the book or maybe I got an older edition or something?

Here’s a few specifics of what I did:

I didn’t have White Lily, so I used the substitution for AP+cake+baking powder+salt.  Also, I used SACO buttermilk powder diluted with water as the 1-1/4 cups of buttermilk rather than 1-1/4 cups of heavy cream or 1-1/4 cups of liquid buttermilk.  I’m guessing that if the recipe in the book is accurate, then the buttermilk powder + water is what made the difference, but the difference was most of a cup of flour?

What does anyone think?

Thanks, and I’m really enjoying reading through the book.

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Posted: 29 December 2008 08:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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In her book Bakewise, Shirley Corriher describes the dough as being very wet.  In the instructions, she says the dough should resemble cottage cheese - and it is a very “wet mess”, not soup but cottage cheese texture.  Then you use an ice cream scoop to plop dough onto a pie pan that you spread the flour on, then you sprinkle more flour on the wet blobs.  She also mentions that the dough blobs have to be scrunched up against the next blob - she says this makes the dough rise and not spread. 

She also says that if you are not using a low protein flour you might need more than a cup of buttermilk to get the right texture.

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Posted: 30 December 2008 09:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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I agree with you about the buttermilk powder plus water instead of cream/buttermilk.  These two liquids are thicker than water by nature, and that could really have made a big difference in the texture of your dough. I’d try it again, using the real ingredients, as Rose’s recipes are usually right on in measurements and directions.

MrsM

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Posted: 30 December 2008 11:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Thanks for the responses. 

I’ll take a crack again at making them with heavy cream and with liquid buttermilk to see how they go.  I just read the wikipedia article on buttermilk and discovered that the powdered stuff that I used is a powder of what’s considered “traditional” buttermilk which is a totally different beast than grocery store buttermilk now.

Actually, I’m confused about why buttermilk is a substitute for heavy cream.  Buttermilk has way way less fat in it than regular milk, let alone heavy cream.  It looks thicker than milk because it’s partially curdled, not because it’s fat like the cream is.  I’d think all that extra fat would mess with the recipe.  Plus you’d think the flavor would be way different. 

Oh, one other thing, if someone has made these biscuits.  When it says that you should scrunch the biscuits together in a pie pan does that mean that I should be using the same pan that contains all the flour that I’m dropping the biscuits in?  So I’d drop in a biscuit, sprinkle flour on top, form it up a bit with my hands, and then scrunch it to the edge near the other biscuits in that same pan?

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Posted: 30 December 2008 01:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I made these biscuits a while back and ran into the same problem you did with the liquid dough.  I also used the buttermilk powder + water, which I wouldn’t do again. 

I used one pan to dunk them in flour and a different pan for baking them.

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Posted: 30 December 2008 06:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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MtRainier - 30 December 2008 03:05 PM

Thanks for the responses. 

Oh, one other thing, if someone has made these biscuits.  When it says that you should scrunch the biscuits together in a pie pan does that mean that I should be using the same pan that contains all the flour that I’m dropping the biscuits in?  So I’d drop in a biscuit, sprinkle flour on top, form it up a bit with my hands, and then scrunch it to the edge near the other biscuits in that same pan?

No, you’d use a separate pan, and the thing is to keep the biscuits very close together so they can’t spread out (side to side), they can only rise (the steam from all the wet in the dough is what will cause the dough to soar up because it can’t go sideways).

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Posted: 30 December 2008 08:12 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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All right.  Thanks again for all the replies.

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