Saturday, Sunday, or any night of the week we chose to have breakfast, you can bet there will be biscuits from scratch along with gravy. Feel intimidated by the word “scratch?” Well don’t! Cooking from scratch is not a difficult thing to do, in fact, you’ve probably made something from scratch before because all it means is that you take what is available to make what you need.
Truth be told, before moving out to the country, I hardly used our large kitchen. However, when moving into our farmhouse, the comfort of our small kitchen and a bit of curiosity of how meals were made nearly 200 years ago in our home, gave me the confidence to lean into making things like biscuits and gravy, which actually take very few ingredients and can typically be found on your shelf.
I can’t tell you how many times cooking from scratch has saved me a half hour trip into town. It’s amazing how you can become resourceful when working with what you have. Friend, I hope you will enjoy a Saturday or Sunday morning with a cup of coffee and some biscuits and gravy that are sure to fill you up and possibly give you a bit of nostalgia of those days long ago.
Farmhouse Scratch Biscuits
3 cups King Arthur all-purpose unbleached flour + additional for workspace
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon cream of tarter
1 stick salted butter cubed and chilled
1/4 cup South Chicago Packing Lard
1 ¼ cup Buttermilk * + additional for brushing
1. Place baking stone on middle rack of your cold oven. Preheat oven to 450°F.
2.Prepare a surface that is lightly dusted with flour.
3. In a large bowl whisk flour, sugar, salt, and cream of tartar.
4. Sprinkle cubed butter over the flour mixture and then add lard. Using a pastry blender, cut butter and lard into the mixture until it has formed coarse crumbs.
5. Form a well in the center of your flour mixture. Pour buttermilk into the well. Use a fork and starting at the side of the bowl, combine the buttermilk and flour mixture until moist.
6. Set dough onto your prepared floured surface. Fold the dough and gently knead until the dough holds together. Using your hands, pat dough into a rectangular shape about 1 ¼ inch thick. Using a biscuit cutter, press down cutting each biscuit out. Be careful not to twist your cutter at the end of the cut. Try to cut as many biscuits as you can out of the dough. If you have extra dough left over, you can gently re-knead the dough. Do not worry if you have a little excess dough left over but not enough to use the cutter. Take the excess dough and form it into a biscuit by hand (my kiddos always fight over this biscuit!).
7. Take your baking stone out from the oven and place on a potholder. Carefully place a piece of parchment paper, cut to size, on the stone. Then arrange the biscuits on the stone with space between them.
8. If you want a crisp golden top to your biscuits, which our family prefers, lightly brush the top of each biscuit with buttermilk. Bake 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.
Serve warm with your favorite jams, butter, or local honey. Makes about 12 biscuits.
If you do not have self-rising flour, use 3 cups all-purpose flour + 1 Tbsp. baking powder + 1 tsp. salt.
If you do not have buttermilk on hand mix 1 ¼ cups milk + 1 Tbsp. lemon juice as a substitute.
If there happens to be leftovers, store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to two days.
White Pepper Gravy
¼ cup butter
¼ cup all-purpose flour (We love King Arthur flour)
½ cup vegetable broth
1 ½ cup milk
2 teaspoons white pepper
1 bay leaf
- Melt butter in a medium sauté pan over medium low heat.
- Once butter has melted, add flour, and stir until combined. About 3 minutes.
- Slowly incorporate the broth while stirring until you have a smooth consistency.
- Once the roux begins to thicken, add milk, white pepper, and bay leaf.
- Lower the heat to low.
- While the mixture simmers, continuing stirring until the gravy thickens.