The duck fat makes these biscuits especially tender and delicious. If you don't render your own duck fat, you can find it in some grocery stores and specialty markets. It's also available through Amazon.com and other online stores.
For light, flaky biscuits, mix and work the dough as little as possible, just until the dough is moist and holds together. Also, when you cut the dough with the biscuit cutter, don't twist. Try to remember to cut up and down. Twisting can cause them to rise lop-sided as they bake.
- 2 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (about 10 ounces)
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder (preferably aluminum-free)
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons duck fat (chilled for about 20 minutes in the freezer until solid)
- 1 cup cold well-shaken buttermilk
Heat the oven to 425 F.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, soda, and salt. Whisk to blend thoroughly.
Work the chilled/frozen duck fat in with a pastry blender until the mixture resembles a meal. Add the buttermilk and stir until just moistened. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead just 2 to 4 times. The dough will be soft.
Pat gently into a circle about 3/4 inches thick. Cut out with biscuit cutters and arrange on the prepared baking sheet. Gather up the scraps of dough and pat again into a small circle. Work the dough as little as possible.
Bake the biscuits for about 12 to 15 minutes, until golden brown.