Monday, November 22, 2010

Soaked Biscuits

sorry folks- no pictures. The camera is dead and a new one isn't in the budget this week.

Last week I rode out to the farm to show my friend Shelley the ropes of making the milk run for our cow share co-op. She's a biologist by training and shares my interest in nutrition and traditional foods. To be totally honest, I have resisted the whole soak-your-grains  thing. I tried it once, made bread like a door stop and went right back to grinding fresh and baking immediately. But on the ride Shelley told me about a guy who is a serious scientist and working on issues of the neurobiology of fat metabolism and other interesting and related stuff & convinced me that I should give grain soaking some more effort. I'm sure that I won't be doing it all the time- it takes a lot more prior planning and I draw the line at Christmas baking. Soaked whole grain sugar cookies just sound too gagtastic to contemplate seriously - not to mention sort of pointless. Still for daily fare, I'm looking for the best nutrition I can manage.

To inaugurate my soaked baking experiments I decided to try Jenny's Fluffy Soaked Whole Wheat Biscuits only mine are decidedly non-lenten. Yes I know that it's advent but my family is much more likely to eat whole wheat anything made with lard and real buttermilk. If this bothers you, pray that the angel of vegan cooking is sent to visit all of us!  Not only did I fail to soak 8 hours (5 was my limit - people were hungry), I altered the recipe. They are good. Really good. I may not bother to cook supper.

2 1/2 cups of whole wheat pastry flour (I used a fresh ground mix of whole wheat, spelt, and kamut, sifted 4 times to remove the bran)
6 tablespoons non-hydrogenated lard and/or raw butter
3/4 cup of real buttermilk - or a similar quantity of milk with whey or yogurt and water
1 tablespoon lemon juice or raw apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt

Dump the flour into a medium size bowl. Using a pastry cutter, or a fork and knife with a cutting motion, cut in the palm oil or coconut oil into the flour. (or  use the food processor!) When the fat is the size of peas or smaller, you are done. Add the milky liquid, and mix in until just combined. Leave overnight at room temperature, well covered. This mixture will be wetter then your average biscuit recipe. This is so we can more easily mix in the salt and rising agents the next day.

Please go to Jenny's version for good pictures of the rest of the process. 

I need to find a good loaf that my kids will eat, which makes good packable sandwich and isn't sourdough (they hate it).

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