Tag Archives: baking

When the world is on fire you make biscuits.

When the world is on fire you make biscuits.

Has it really been two years since I posted here? Wow. I guess a global pandemic, an attack on the US Capital, a contested election, a racial reckoning, the loss of my beloved step father, the loss of so many American lives to disease, violence, terrorism and war, has had me a little distracted huh? What’s sad is this list is incomplete.

When I got the notice from Go Daddy to renew my domain I seriously thought about letting it go, but my wiser self decided to pay the $18 and give myself the year to think about it. It’s not that I think anyone is dying to read what I write but someday I’ll be gone and this blog was started as a gift to my grandchildren. It’s for and because of them, that I sit here on this unseasonably warm Sunday September morning trying to decide what to share with you, and what you’re going to get is biscuits. Yes, biscuits. See here’s the thing. In the last eighteen months, I didn’t learn a new language, build a new deck, take up a keto diet, redecorate my entire house or any of the other ridiculously productive things other people did in quarantine. What I did do is learn to bake a really good biscuit. There was a lot of trial and error involved. There was research. There was eating of the victories and failures because let’s be realistic, with a enough butter and jam even a less than perfect biscuit is edible and I grew up in a “waste not want not” home. As I got better at it, I posted some pictures on Facebook and every time the comments said “Share your recipe!” “They look delicious.” “I want some!” “You know those are full of carbs and will go straight to your ass right?” Ok, that last one was my own but you get the point. I’ve been a life long baker but until I took this on as project, I hadn’t had much success making a biscuit that didn’t resemble by look or texture a hockey puck or a very unappealing looking dog treat. With much practice I can say I make a pretty damn good biscuit these days. Here’s how I make them. You don’t have to make them yourself. No pressure. Do what you want. I am sharing because I’m proud of these babies and these days, with so much sadness, divisiveness, and fear everywhere it’s nice to have this little thing that makes me feel good about myself.


Preheat oven to 400. Put some parchment paper on a cookie sheet. Put a big piece of parchment on the counter.

Wash your hands. (Hey, I assume nothing)

  • 2 1/2 C flour
  • 1 TBS baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 C (one stick) very cold or frozen butter (If you use salted butter, decrease the salt to 1/4 tsp)
  • 1 C milk or buttermilk
  • cream to brush on tops

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl and mix well with a fork. Here’s where it gets really fun. Use a box grater and grate the butter in to the dry ingredients. Work quick so it doesn’t get soft. I use a frozen stick of butter for this. Once you’ve shredded up all the butter, stir it in with the fork . It resembles little “pebbles” in your dry ingredients.

Add your milk and stir with the fork. It is still kind of sticky but dump that whole mess on the parchment paper.

Start shaping your dough in to a rectangle like about the size of an 8×10 picture frame. If it’s too sticky to handle sprinkle a little flour on it but not too much. If you use too much flour, the biscuits will be dry. Once you make your rectangle, fold it in half, and then half again. This is called laminating. This is what gives you layers. Don’t handle the dough any more than necessary. You don’t want to melt the butter.

Do this folding over thing three times. Then gently shape into either a rectangle or circle depending on what shape you want your biscuits. When we make sausage gravy I cut them in to 9 squares. Today we were making sausage patties so I cut 8 circles with a biscuit cutter. When doing a round biscuit, cut as many as you can then take the scraps, reform them and cut more until all your dough is used up. It’s normal to have a rough looking last biscuit. She may not be much to look at but she’s got a great personality.

Biscuits like to be near each other so place them fairly close on your pan. I use a cookie sheet with parchment paper. If you don’t regularly use parchment paper go to the store and buy it now. Buy two. It will be life changing. Brush the tops with melted butter or cream. I use half and half because that’s what I usually have on hand.

Bake 13 to 16 minutes. Do not be tempted to open the oven and check on them. They need all that good hot heat to stay in the oven. At 13 minutes you can start checking on them. Take them out when the tops and the bottoms are brown and beautiful.

Can we take a minute to admire how lovely these are? (final Jeopardy song plays)

Cook up some sausage, fry an egg and put this bad boy together. This is the point where I handed one to my husband who said “I don’t think I can fit that in my mouth” to which I said “That’s what she said.” and it devolved from there. We’re dumb, but breakfast was delicious this morning!

Note: You can make a sweet version of these by increasing the sugar to 2 TBS and sprinkle the tops with sugar after brushing with cream. Macerate some strawberries and grab some whip cream and you have a killer strawberry shortcake.

I’ll try not to take two years to post again.

Cinnamon rolls I am coming for you….




Cookie Perfection

Cookie Perfection

A few years ago I took a speech class that was required for my course of study.  One of our assignments was to get up and teach the class how to do something from start to finish.  I demonstrated how to make chocolate chip cookies. I even brought some finished cookies for my classmates to sample. I got an A. 
Today on my way home from work I found out that tomorrow is my last day with one of my co workers this school year. I decided it was reason enough to bake cookies to take to work.  I'll be honest, I don't need much of an excuse to bake cookies. I'm kind of known as a baker in these parts. My husband is my guinea pig when it comes to trying new things out. Early in our relationship he instituted his own cookie policy.  It says "never ever EVER throw out a cookie, no matter if it's over cooked or looks funny.  I will be the judge of what goes in the trash."  He reminds me of this policy quite often. So today I came home and baked cookies for my friend.
For the first time ever I am about to reveal my Not Quite World Famous Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe.  I hope my children don't mind me sharing this with the world.  I think they had visions of me on my death bed  like a character from The Godfather summoning one of them over and whispering "Come here my child. I will now share the secret cookie recipe with you. Do not write it down. It must be kept only in the family." and then I'd fall back on my pillow, cough a few times and die. 
So I'm going to show you how I make these things and give you a few tips along the way.  Pay attention closely because these cookies can win friends and influence people.  You might even be able to get out of speeding tickets with them.  I don't know…it's worth a try right?  My friend at work actually doesn't like chocolate so I am going to split the dough and make half with white chocolate and dried cranberries. (I know, she's a weirdo right?) 
Gather your ingredients. Don't let the butter get too soft.  Make sure it's just barely room temperature.  If it gets too soft stick it back in the fridge for a few minutes. I always use real butter.  I think it's what makes these cookies so delicious.  Margarine just doesn't taste as good.  I know Paula Deen gets a lot of flack for her love of butter but sometimes there are no substitutes. In these cookies butter is just not negotiable. 

Cream your butter for a few minutes until it's nice and creamy. Add the sugars and mix well.  Stop a few times and scrape down the sides. Add the egg and mix well.  I always break the egg in to a small bowl to be sure I don't get any shell in my batter. 


 In a medium bowl mix the flour, salt and baking soda.  Slowly add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture.  Go easy here.  If the mixer is going too fast you are going to get blow back.  I know this from experience.  Stop a few times to scrape down the sides.

 This is a good time to preheat your oven to 375 degrees . Line your cookie sheets with parchment paper.  You don't have to use parchment but I never bake cookies without it.  Makes clean up easy and keeps the bottom of the cookies from getting too dark.

  This is where I separated the dough. I mixed chocolate chips in one half and white chips and cranberries in the other.  These are semi sweet chips but I prefer milk chocolate.  Mmmm chocolate.  At this point you will be very tempted to eat the dough raw.  You shouldn't eat too much because of the raw egg but seriously, when has that ever stopped me from eating cookie dough? 


Scoop on to a cookie sheet leaving plenty of room between them.  I don't like it when cookies run together so I don't crowd them on the cookie sheet.  Using a cookie scoop will give you about 3 dozen good size cookies.  If you want them smaller use a teaspoon.

Bake for 9-11 minutes or until golden brown.  Cool on the pan for 2-3 minutes and then move to a cooling rack.  Let the pan cool a bit before scooping out your next batch.   These cookies come out crispy on the outside but chewy and soft in the middle.  Pair a few with a cold glass of milk and you're talking heaven on earth!


Here is the full recipe. 
Felicia's Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies


  • 3/4 C granulated sugar
  • 3/4 C brown sugar
  • 1 C butter at room temperature
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/4 C flour
  • 1 tsp baking sod
  • a 1/2 tsp salt
  • 12 oz chocolate chips
  • 1 C chopped nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 375.  Mix butter, sugars and egg in a large bowl.  Add dry ingredients. Mix well.  Dough will be stiff.  Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Drop by rounded teaspoonful about 2 inches apart.  Bake 9-11 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from cookie sheet and cool on wire rack.