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Cheddar-Chive Biscuits

To make classic buttermilk biscuits, omit the cheese and chives and substitute 3/4 cup buttermilk for the milk. Decrease the baking powder to 2 tsp. and add 1/2 tsp. baking soda. Proceed as directed.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading dough
  • 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded extra-sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh chives
  • 6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
  • 3/4 cup milk

Directions:

Prepare the baking sheet
Position a rack in the middle of an oven and preheat to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Mix the dough
In a large bowl, stir together the 2 cups flour, the baking powder, salt, cheese and chives. Using a pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in the butter until the mixture forms coarse crumbs about the size of peas. Add the milk to the dry ingredients and, using a rubber spatula, stir just until evenly moistened.

Shape and bake the biscuits
Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and press together gently. Knead the dough about 6 times and form into a ball. Pat into a circle about 3/4 inch thick. Using a floured 3-inch round biscuit cutter, cut out rounds and place them on the prepared sheet, about 1 inch apart. Gather the scraps, pat out again and cut out more biscuits. Bake until the biscuits are golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool slightly, then serve. Makes 12 biscuits.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast Series, Baking, by Lou Seibert Pappas (Oxmoor House, 2006).