Saturday, January 21, 2012

Trying a new biscuit recipe...

I'm still trying to get rid of that whole wheat flour. It just doesn't act right. If you've dealt with whole wheat flour you know what I mean, it's not as sticky as regular all-purpose flour and it doesn't have the right texture and it's heavier and etc., so I'm trying to substitute it for half of the flour in regular substitutes and it's not turning out right.

So now I'm trying biscuits with half the flour substituted with whole wheat. And it's not acting right, my biscuits ended up a bit heavier than usual, though they're still nicely buttery and flakey enough and certainly *taste* like biscuits are supposed to taste, even if they aren't quite right...

Ah well. I still have a bunch of whole wheat flour to go through, so I'll have to play with this some more. The amount of butter is what made them flaky (though a bit denser than usual), but they're a bit *too* buttery because of the greater density caused by the whole wheat flour. So maybe I'll substitute a couple tablespoons of shortening for a couple tablespoons of butter. Or maybe try the vodka trick that someone mentioned here a while back, for getting a good consistency without activating the glutens (these biscuits aren't tough so the glutens didn't activate, but they definitely are denser than my regular biscuits!).

-- Badtux the Cooking Penguin

No recipe, because it's not quite right, more experiments are needed.


  1. I've had problems with whole wheat flour, too. While I haven't made biscuits, for breads, cookies, cakes, and brownies, I've had some success by using 1/3 self rising flour mixed with 2/3 whole wheat. Otherwise, using mostly all purpose with a small amount of whole wheat to add flavor works well.

  2. I have heard of a difference in winter versus spring wheat flours. One being better for bread and one being better for lighter products. I know Pillsbury never heard that but there may be some specialty grinds that offer the choice.
    I don't don crackers, on purpose anyway, but I am in to making my own bread and have on and of since the 70's. My early wheat breads were very flat, but extremely filling. Wheat seems to need extra yeast if you are going raised, and more time or perhaps and extra raise and knead, but then if you kneed it too much you are history.
    Sigh.No answers just more questions.

  3. Pygalgia, that's what my attempt to mix half-and-half all purpose and whole wheat was.

    W3ski, there's three basic white flours you can get at the grocery store: "pastry" (low-gluten, used for cakes and pastries), "all purpose" (medium gluten, used for biscuits and light bread), and "bread" (high gluten, used for crusty breads and pasta). "winter" and "spring" seems to be differentiating between the amount of gluten, but I have no idea how that maps to what's available at the grocery store. To make it even more difficult, there's "whole wheat" and "self-rising" flour, neither of which tells you anything at all, though usually "self-rising" flour is the medium-gluten "all-purpose" flour with baking powder and salt pre-mixed into it.

    So anyhow, I'm doing all this with regular medium-gluten all-purpose flour, I'm thinking maybe I'll go with pygalgia's suggestion and instead of half-and-half, go with 2/3 all-purpose and 1/3 whole wheat. Maybe that won't affect the texture so much while still adding color and flavor and nutrition. Sigh!

    Uhm, yeah, the GOP race has driven me to bake. I don't drink. And your point is?

    - Badtux the Baking Penguin

  4. Hey, 'Tux, why don't you just buy a box of Bisquick and be done with it?

  5. And that helps me get rid of my excess whole wheat flour... how?

    Biscuits are easy to make with white flour. Just baking powder, a pinch of salt, shortening / butter, milk, and done. Texture is controlled by how much you handle the dough and by the proportion of shortening/butter to milk, more shortening/butter makes it flakier, more milk makes it more bread-like. A dab of sugar will help offset the normal acidity of bleached flour. No need to get a special mix for making biscuits, they're pretty much ridiculously easy to make... with all-purpose flour. With whole wheat flour? Uhm, easy enough, but getting the texture right seems like it's going to take some doing, and the fats in whole wheat flour mean that a dab of sugar isn't needed to offset the acidity of the white flour. Though the biscuits I made last night were so good that I ate them all almost immediately, so while the texture was off, the flavor certainly wasn't!

    - Badtux the Baking Penguin

  6. Maybe you could try baking at a slightly lower temperature, which would allow the baking powder more time to work.

  7. You could give away the whole flour and take up drinking . . .


  8. Uhm, yeah, the GOP race has driven me to bake. I don't drink. And your point is?"

    roflmao, I get it. I've been trying out some oat flour (coffee grinder) recipies and it don't act right either. It makes tasty, yet crumbly cranberry oat muffins.

  9. I've never tried any sort of quick bread with whole wheat flour. Yeast breads work great with it... you can even use whole wheat straight, not mixed with any white flour, if you're willing to spend most of a day baking. But the heaviness, the density of whole wheat bread is part of its appeal. That's not what you want in biscuits, though.

    Those GOP candidates are enough to drive one to drink. I've taken to drinking only one night a week; if I drank every time a GOPer appeared on TV lately, I'd be snockered all the time.

  10. Heck, I Drink, then I bake, then I drink some more!
    It Still hasn't managed to drive the insanity and repulsieveness of the GOP from My mind!

  11. JzB, you want me to become a drunk?!

    Karen, good suggestion. My oven tends to run hot, so that's something I need to keep in mind when baking with baking powder.

    Steve: Exactly :).

    w3ski, some sights are just too repulsive to be taken sober. That said, since I don't drink, I shall have to comfort myself with massive amounts of chocolate... my next attempt at baking will be chocolate chip cookies. Wish me luck!


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