Friday, January 20, 2012

Family Recipe Friday - Cowboy Biscuits

Cowboy Biscuits

I got this recipe from a real cowboy, many years ago while living in Texas. By the time I met the old gentleman, he was broken down and getting rather long in the tooth from so many years out on the range. But a nicer, more gentlemanly man I have never met. He taught me all about reading "cowboy books". Yep, he introduced me to Louis L'Amour, Zane Gray, among just a few. And I, as an 18-year old, introduced him to romance novels. A more unlikely pair there never was. But he was kind to me, at a time when I needed it.

I made the batch of cowboy biscuits you see above just this morning, and didn't think till I had them out of the pan to take a picture of them for you. But I did find a picture of them in a pan on another site,
[via here]

Cowboy cooks used to mix these up and put them in cast iron Dutch ovens over the hot coals of a campfire.

To make these I use the following ingredients:

3 - cups self-rising flour
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1-teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2-cup melted vegetable shortening
1-1/2 cups whole milk

Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
Melt shortening in 10-inch cast iron skillet over low heat.
Meanwhile, in a medium mixing bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients.
Mix in milk and stir together [I use a fork for this].
When shortening is completely melted, carefully swirl around interior of skillet to be sure bottom and sides are thoroughly coated. Pour melted shortening into dough, and stir to incorporate. Once the shortening is stirred in, use your hand and gently knead dough in the bowl to mix wel. Only knead a few times, kneading very much will make this dense and rubbery.
Place dough in skillet and pat down and spread over entire bottom of skillet.
Use a glass to cut the enter into a round biscuit. Use a butter/table knife to cut the outer edges into triangular pieces. Cut into the dough, but not completely through. [TIP: Dip glass and knife into flour to keep from sticking.]
Place pan in oven and bake approximately 10-12 minutes.
Serve hot. Make 9 biscuits in 10-inch skillet. [These are BIG biscuits!]


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