January 24, 2010

Easy breezy cream biscuits on a Sunday morning

I am convinced that Sunday morning always calls for a treat (especially after a week filled with mostly vegetarian meals)...The heavy cream in my fridge, which by the way was a few days post its expiration date, was calling my name. My initial thought was to use it in a quiche since I have two frozen Whole Foods tart shells on hand but I realized that I had ran out of eggs.

One of the quickest and easiest recipes that uses cream that I know of is the Cooks Illustrated cream biscuits recipe. It takes 20 min tops - you mix the ingredients, make the dough and cut the biscuits in the amount of time it takes your oven to heat up to 450 degrees. Then you pop them in the oven and 15 minuts later you have light and airy delights that melt in your mouth...


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour ( I have modified the Cooks Illustrated recipe and use a 50/50 mix of whole wheat and unbleached all purpose flour)
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder (sans aluminum of course!)
  • 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
Step 1: Make the dough

Mix the dry ingredients well and pour the cream slowly while stirring with a spoon until a dough forms (gather it into a shaggy ball)

Step 2: Knead the dough

Once you have formed a shaggy dough, sprinkle your countertop with a bit of flour, place the dough on it and knead it for 30 sec...

...until its relatively smooth

Step 3: Form the biscuits

Press the dough into an 8 inch square pan or simply shape it into a 3/4-inch circle

Cut the biscuits with a cookie cutter - I don't have one so I use a small wine tumbler:

Step 4: Bake

Put in the oven and rotate the baking sheet halfway through. Bake until golden brown (15 min)

I served the biscuits with the last of Plodova Salata's cranberry relish...

...and the obligatory stilton and Straus Creamery sweet butter


  1. That's pretty cool! I have a small box of heavy cream, calling my name, too :)
    Interesting how are these buiscits, callorie wise?

  2. I haven't done the math but cream has a lot of calories

  3. A bit less than 200 cals - pretty calorie dense

  4. These look really good and would be perfect for a tea party! ;)

  5. They almost taste like scones - what a great idea, Slaninka - next time I will put some dried fruit in them and make them sweet!

  6. I just made them. They are really easy and fast to make. I put 4 tbsp. sugar, some dry cherries and chopped almonds, vanilla sugar as well. Don’t tell me about the calories! I eat three already.

  7. do you guys think these will work with whole milk instead of the heavy cream? Is it worth even trying with milk... i don't have any cream but have tons of whole milk and wanted to try and make these...

  8. Honestly, Slaninka, they won't be great. Biscuits need fat to be tender. You want old-fashioned biscuits, you use a ton of butter and buttermilk and a very light touch to have a decent outcome.

    Here you only need cream and have quite a bit of liberty as far as handling goes... As Cooks Illustrated puts it "Unlike traditional biscuits, cream biscuits benefit from relatively rough treatment. This biscuit, which was kneaded for 30 seconds before baking rose higher than the next biscuit, which was handled gently." ..."With high rise and light texture, biscuits made with a simple combination of heavy cream, flour, baking powder, and salt beat out more complicated recipes."

    also...biscuits can be soft and fluffy or flaky and high-rising. Each type requires surprisingly different ingredients and techniques.

    After some searching, I found a milk-based recipe for you from CI:

    2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (preferably King Arthur)
    1 tablespoon baking powder
    3/4 teaspoon table salt
    5 tablespoons unsalted butter , chilled, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
    2 tablespoons unsalted butter , melted
    3 tablespoons vegetable shortening , chilled, or lard
    3/4 cup milk , cold

  9. Slaninka, i have sent the detailed recipe to your gmail account. Let us know how it goes