Recipes

Nancy Silverton’s All-Butter Biscuits

  • Serves

    makes 12 biscuits

  • Cook

    4 hours

MATT TAYLOR-GROSS

Treat these super-buttery biscuits like puff pastry for folds that separate into flaky layers when baked.

Ingredients

  • 5 sticks unsalted butter, frozen, plus more, melted, for brushing
  • 5 cups (1 lb, 7 oz.) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 2 tbsp. plus 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tbsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 cups buttermilk, chilled
  • Flaky sea salt

Instructions

Step 1

Either working with a box grater over a large bowl or using the large grating blade of a food processor, quickly grate the frozen sticks of butter and then freeze the butter for at least 30 minutes. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk the flour with the baking powder, salt, sugar, and baking soda, and freeze the dry ingredients for the same amount of time as the butter.

Step 2

Scrape the frozen butter into the dry ingredients and toss briefly to combine. Pour in the buttermilk and stir just until it forms a solid dough. Scrape the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and, using your hands, mold the dough into a 10-by-7-inch rectangle. Fold the rectangle in thirds like a letter and then rotate 90 degrees. Using a rolling pin, flatten the dough again into a 10-by-7-inch rectangle. Repeat the folding, turning, and rolling process 3 more times, ending with the dough shaped into a 12-by-10-inch rectangle about 1⁄2 inch thick. Trim the edges so you have a sharp, clean rectangle and then cut this rectangle into 12 equal squares. Space the biscuits at least 3 inches apart on 2 parchment paper-lined baking sheets and freeze for at least 2 hours or up to 3 days.

Step 3

Heat the oven to 425°. Brush each biscuit with some melted butter and then sprinkle with sea salt. Bake 1 sheet of biscuits for 10 minutes. Then reduce the oven temperature to 400°, rotate the baking sheet, and bake the biscuits until puffed and golden brown, about 15 minutes. Transfer the biscuits to a rack and repeat to bake the second sheet of biscuits. Let the biscuits cool for 5 minutes before serving.

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