and the secret is... BAKING POWDER! Ok, so your saying to yourself that is not quite a secret. Well, I beg to differ.
Commercial, double acting baking powder loses its effectiveness with age. And how fast do you really use a can of baking powder? So mine is always old and less effective. So to save your pocketbook and make your biscuits extra light and fluffy, mix your own baking powder before you use it!
DIY Baking Powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
1/4 tsp. cornstarch
= 1 tsp. baking powder
You can also make it in larger batches (although still small enough you will use it quickly).
**Hint: cornstarch soaks up moisture so the mixture will store well. You can leave it out if you are mixing it up to use immediately.**
I used it in my last batch and even with whole wheat flour they were light and fluffy!
Baking Powder Biscuits
2 C. flour (I like to use at least 1/2 whole wheat)
1 Tbp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/3 C. shortening
3/4 C. milk
Mix dry ingredients. Use a pastry cutter, fork, or your fingers to "cut" the shortening into the dry mix. Add the milk and mix until wet. Knead the dougha few times and roll out on a floured surface until 1/2" thick. Cut with a biscuit cutter or something else to make them nice and round. Bake on 450 degrees F for 10-12 minutes or until browning.
Baking Powder Drop Biscuits
Use the same steps as above but increase the milk to 1 C. and drop by spoonfuls onto a greased baking sheet. Cook the same.
Next time I will give you something extra yummy to eat them with!