Bakewell Cream, a traditional New England leavening agent, makes these biscuits rise high. The unusual baking method ensures that they don't overcook, even if you forget they're in the oven for a while.
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4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon Bakewell Cream (see Note)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cold vegetable shortening
1 3/4 cups buttermilk
How to Make It
Preheat the oven to 475°. In a large bowl, whisk the flour with the Bakewell Cream, baking soda and salt. Using a pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in the vegetable shortening until the mixture resembles small peas. Add the buttermilk and stir with a fork until a dough forms.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead 3 or 4 times. Roll out the dough 3/4 inch thick. Using a 2-inch-round biscuit cutter or glass, cut out 12 biscuits. Transfer the biscuits to a baking sheet, and bake in the bottom third of the oven for 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the biscuits sit in the hot oven, without opening the door, for about 10 minutes longer, or until golden and cooked through. Transfer the biscuits to a basket and serve immediately.
Bakewell Cream can be ordered from Apple Ledge Company (207-989-5576). You can substitute 2 teaspoons of baking powder for the Bakewell Cream and baking soda in the recipe.
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