(courtesy of Kevin Futamachi, baking and pastry chef, Renaissance Reno Downtown Hotel in Reno. Makes 12 biscuits)
These buttermilk biscuits are good plain or for biscuits and gravy and strawberry shortcake.
½ pound (2 sticks) butter
2½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
¼ cup sugar
1 cup buttermilk
Place butter in freezer to chill at least 30 minutes. Meanwhile, mix flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar in large bowl; reserve in refrigerator. Whisk together 1 egg and buttermilk; reserve in refrigerator.
Take dry mixture from refrigerator. Using the large side of box grater, grate frozen butter into dry mixture. Mix thoroughly, making sure there are no large butter chunks. Take refrigerated wet ingredients and pour into dry ingredients, mixing with a wooden spoon until dough comes together. Be sure there are no dry spots. Do not overmix.
Put dough on floured work surface and form into a 12-by-6-inch rectangle. Lift the long side of dough and fold to the center line of the rectangle. Repeat same procedure on other side. Now fold long rectangle of dough in half. (In pastry, this is called a book fold.)
Roll out dough to ½-inch thickness and cut with 4-inch biscuit cutter. Place on parchment-lined baking sheet. Chill in refrigerator 30 minutes.
Preheat convection oven to 375 degrees F or standard oven 350 degrees F.
After chilling, egg wash biscuits. To do so, use a fork to beat remaining egg with 1 tablespoon water and brush liquid on top of biscuits. At this point, you can add some decorative sugar, if you are making strawberry shortcakes.
Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until biscuits puff up and are golden brown.