I finally made a batch of biscuits today. I’d been planning on making them all week, but you know how it is when you are retired. There’s always something else to do…
The recipe that I like the best calls for baking powder, baking soda and yeast. Since I didn’t have any baking soda, and all the high altitude recipes say to cut back on the baking powder, I figured, they should be ok if I use the usual amount of baking powder and the yeast, without the baking soda. As I didn’t have any buttermilk (and had forgotten to buy unflavored yogurt or vinegar or lemons for juice to mix with milk to make pseudo buttermilk) I added about 2 and 1/2 teaspoons of cream of tartar. Buttermilk is more acidy than regular milk, so the cream of tartar is supposed to rectify this ph imbalance. It was worth a try, anyway.
The batter turned out very wet; I am guessing that the flour is fresh soft wheat as opposed to hard wheat or dried out wheat. I used butter instead of shortening, the shortening here has an ‘off’ smell to my taste. I mixed in some cream with the milk; I like my rich foods.
I had preheated the oven for quite awhile and had set the dial right between 180C and 220C which is supposed to be about 400F. Remember, this is a new oven for me, and it doesn’t have a light that goes off (or on) when it’s ready. So, I am guessing. The recipe says to bake for 12 minutes; I like my biscuits big so I usually bake for 20-25 minutes.
Well, 30 minutes later, they were still not done, not even beige. I think I left them in there for about an hour; slightly beige on top, nice browning on the bottom, though. They tasted wonderful with a bit of butter and some strawberry jam.
Not sure about that oven, though. I’m going to look for an oven thermometer next shopping trip.