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Graham Biscuits

Time: 10 minutes to make, 15 minutes to bake

The bran in this flour gives the biscuits a fine, crisp patina and a delicate crunch.

Equipment Mise en Place
For this recipe you will need a large mixing bowl, a rubber spatula, a rolling pin, a 2-inch biscuit cutter, some parchment paper, and a sheet pan.

Ingredients
1 1/2 cups (8 ounces) Antebellum-Style Graham Flour
1/2 cup (2.5 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
6 tablespoons (3 ounces) cold, unsalted butter, cut into 6 pieces
10 to 12 tablespoons whole milk (1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons, up to 3/4 cup)

Directions
1. Adjust the oven racks to the lowest and upper-middle positions and heat the oven to 450 degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment and set aside.

2. Place the flours, baking powder, and salt in a food processor bowl and pulse to combine. Scatter the butter pieces over the surface and process to a coarse meal, about ten 1-second pulses.

3. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and stir in 10 tablespoons milk. Blend lightly with a rubber spatula. If the dry ingredients are not uniformly moist, add more milk, 1 tablespoon at a time. (The dough will be fairly wet.) Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rest for 5 minutes.

4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll or pat it out to a 1-inch thickness. Dip a 2-inch biscuit cutter in flour, stamp out 5 biscuits, and place them on the sheet pan. Press the dough back into one piece, roll it lightly till smooth, and resume cutting biscuits until the dough is gone. You should have 9 or 10 biscuits.

5. Bake the biscuits on the lowest rack until they are nicely risen and deep golden brown on the bottoms, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer the sheet pan to the upper-middle rack and bake to brown the tops, 6 to 8 minutes more. Remove the biscuits from the oven and serve them hot with plenty of sweet butter and honey or sorghum.

Makes 9 or 10 biscuits

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Baking Notes
Flour milled from heirloom grains absorbs liquid more slowly than commercially processed flour. Since this dough may feel wet at first, it is prudent to let it rest in the bowl for 5 minutes before rolling it out.

Work with this dough lightly and quickly. Use as little flour as possible when rolling it out, and roll it but twice. Excess flour and overhandling make for tough biscuits.

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