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Getting Out of a Rut

24 March 2008

We all do it: Get used to something and stop trying alternatives. For example, biscuits. There’s the recipe you’ve been using since you started making biscuits. It’s the recipe you showed your kids when they started cooking on their own. It works well (it’s the Betty Crocker buttermilk and shortening recipe, after all — a classic!). Why would you ever look at another recipe?

Until the lazy day you don’t feel like walking over to the cookbook shelf and grabbing the Betty Crocker (so lazy). You flip to the index of the cookbook you’re using for a soup recipe. And, look, it’s got a biscuit recipe, too. Might as well give it a try.

Hmmm. This one is made with whole milk (no prob, just mix a little cream in the skim milk) and butter (no shortening? They’ll be hard as a rock!). But the author gives you two tips.

One is, after you place the prepared biscuits on the cookie sheet, stick them in the freezer for 15 minutes or the refrigerator for 30 minutes, then put them in the oven. The secret to flaky biscuits, she says, is cold dough. (Well, that, and handling them as little as possible during the process, as you already know from Betty Crocker.)

The second is to place the biscuit cookie sheet on a second, empty one when you place the biscuits in the oven. That’s the secret to preventing dark bottoms on your biscuits.

How did they turn out? Fantastic.

Look at me — Old dog, new tricks!

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