At first, the idea of Biscuit Week felt a bit constricting. Assuming we limited the definition of “biscuit” to the American sense, and included no mention of British cookies (or dog treats), we were left with a glorified hunk of butter and flour to discuss for an entire hunk of February. But oh, how this theme did inspire the masses. And not just the many writers who contributed thoughtful features and creative recipes to The Takeout, either; we also have the readers to thank for enthusiastically participating in the discussion of this buttery wonder. For those who missed out, here’s a look back at Biscuit Week 2020.
“Adopting biscuits as a morning carb changed the way I entertain. After decades of devotion to bagels and lox, they made me realize there was a whole other way to do brunch: the biscuit bar.” –Stacey Ballis
“The reason shortening makes such spectacular, fluffy biscuits is its high melting point of 117 degrees Fahrenheit; in the oven, the biscuit has enough time for its structure to set up before the shortening liquefies. Coconut oil, on the other hand, has a melting point of just 76 degrees. The only way you’re getting a coconut-oil-based biscuit that’s anywhere near the real thing is to make sure it stays solid in the oven for as long as possible, and the easiest way to do that is to freeze the oil until it’s rock solid.” –Allison Robicelli
“On a base level ham biscuits are exactly what they sound like: a biscuit filled with ham. They’re greater than the sum of their parts, though, and like so many Southern foods it carries a historical legacy.” –Jacob Dean
“The first time I made it, I got it wrong. I bought the fancy, expensive, non-ultra pasteurized cream for $8 and patiently let it cook for twelve hours, and then chilled it for another eight hours, then chilled it some more. It tasted right, but the texture was an embarrassment: gritty and liquidy in places, with hard yellow chunks. Would it serve as hardscrabble clotted cream in a peasant cottage? Sure. But not on my watch. Not when I was so looking forward to having my own vat of silky clotted cream to use with abandon.” –A.E. Dwyer
“It is possible, of course, in these glorious modern times, to make beaten biscuits without having to go to the trouble of beating something. You don’t even need a biscuit brake; a food processor, according to both Joy Of Cooking and Atlanta Magazine, works just as well. (Joy says that hand-beating makes the biscuits flakier; Atlanta says there’s no difference at all.) But if you’re going to do the thing, you might as well do it properly.” –Aimee Levitt
These ice cream sandwiches contain neither ice cream nor cookies, and they’re the best you’ll ever make
“Though I built this recipe to function like a proper ice cream sandwich—that is, one that you assemble and then pop in the freezer again to set—I find myself unable to wait once the biscuits come out of the oven, and I keep splitting them open on a plate, smearing them with a fat pat of semifreddo, and eating them like an absolute savage.” –Allison Robicelli