81 Layer Biscuits from Travis

This memory for 81 Layer Bisquits comes from my pal Travis.

Travis and I met here in the Bay Area, and some time back he decided to go back home to his roots in North Carolina. Through the magic of facebook, we stay in touch and he was eager to share for #FoodMemories17. Remember –  If you want to submit your own memory – check out the Sharing Our Memories Post or visit the #FoodMemories17 page for more detials

81 Layer Biscuits

Frank: So Traviswhat is your food memory you want to share?
Travis: I grew up in the mountains of North Carolina, and when I think of food memories, one food comes to mind immediately: biscuits. My mother always made fresh biscuits with every meal. We never had biscuits out of a can.
F: So you mean you never cheated and used a can? or those frozen bagged ones?
T: hmm not unless you count playing with store bought biscuit dough instead of playdough at a baby sitters house; hence my nickname “Mama’s Little Dough Boy.”
F: <Smiles> You do know that this will come back to haunt you now that I know that…
T: Yes.. I know.. ok so back to Bisquits.. Several decades later, I still like playing with dough. I often try different recipes. Like many other home and self-taught bakers, at some piont I decided to alter a recipe for biscuits that had become my “go to favorites”. My goal was to see what woudl happen if I added a variation of a flaky pastry technique called lamination.
F: Is that the one that you layer butter between dough for what seems like forever and role it out?
T: Pretty much. If you’ve ever made homemade croissants or puff pastry, you’ll have used this trick. Lamination creates layers of butter in a pastry so that it will “puff” in the oven and give unparalleled rise to dough. If you’ve never laminated dough before, this is a really simple process and the result is so gratifying.
F: Did it work?
T: Sure did. This variation of biscuits have layer upon layer of flaky deliciousness and are perfect paired with any of the classics: tomato biscuit, sausage biscuit, gravy biscuit, ham biscuit, fried chicken biscuit or just the simple perfection of some homemade honey butter. Honestly, I had two of these babies today with nothing on them at all. I hope you enjoy these as much as I did. Fair warning, they’re slightly addictive. 
 

81 Layer Biscuits

Ingredients:

  • 2 Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 2 Teaspoons Sugar
  • 2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
  • ½ Teaspoon Salt
  • 1 ¼ Cup Heavy Cream
  • ¼ Cup Unsalted Butter (melted & cooled to room temp)
  • Self Rising Flour for dusting

Recipe:

To make the dough

  1. In large bowl, whisk the AP (All Purpose) Flour, Sugar, Baking Powder & Salt together ’til well combined.
  2. Add Heavy Cream & stir with wooden spoon to form dough. (Note: At this stage the dough will seem slightly dry.)
  3. Knead in the bowl for about 30 seconds.
  4. Lay out a tea towel and dust heavily with SR (Self Rising) Flour.
  5. Turn dough out onto tea towel and form into roughly 8×12” rectangle. (Note: you can do this by hand or a floured rolling pin)

Laminate Dough:

  1. Brush the top of dough with the melted Butter and sift a layer of SF (Self Rising) Flour on top of the butter.
  2. Fold into thirds by taking the bottom third of the dough and turn it onto the middle, then pull down the top third down to create 3 layers, exactly as you would fold a piece of paper to place in a legal envelope.
  3. Press out (or roll out) the dough into a rectangle again & rotate 180 degrees.
  4. Repeat this step 3 more times, remember to brush with Butter & sift with SF (Self Rising) Flour before folding.
  5. In all total you will end up with 81 fold. (First fold creates 3 layers, second fold creates 9, then 27 & finally 81 with fourth fold).

 

Ready for Baking:

  1. Heavily butter an 8×8” baking pan and press dough into pan in an even layer.
  2. Cool in refrigerator for 2 to 3 hours. 
  3. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  4. Turn dough out upside down onto wax paper.
  5. Using a very sharp knife, cut 9 squares with single quick press through the dough, this will ensure a nice rise.
  6. Place onto baking sheet lined with parchment paper, roughly 1 ½” apart.
  7. Bake approx. 15-18 minutes rotating pan halfway through cooking.

 

Note – the orginal of this recipe was adapted from America’s Test Kitchen Cream Biscuits Recipe

 In case some of you have never done the layered dough/butter combination – I found a few youtube videos that will illustrate the different techniques – but in the end, get your hands in it and try for yourself!

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