25 November 2009

A Recipe for Michael Smith's Frozen Butter Biscuits for Thanksgiving

Frozen Butter Biscuits

  I'd love to take a few moments to wish all of our American friends a very happy Thanksgiving. I hope you have many hands to make the work lighter and many smiling faces around your table. There is just so much to be thankful for....despite everything!!

 Thanksgiving here in Canada was in October so we are ogling your recipe ideas for the Christmas holidays. So for the past week or two I have not been baking up a storm, or been up to my elbows with saucepans, nor do I want to stick my head in the oven either...just kidding. Our time will come and I hope you have many things to make you truly thankful.

I have had these biscuits waiting on the sidelines to have their time to SHINE!!! These are gold-standard biscuits from Canadian Chef Michael Smith. These are another one of the down-home dishes I enjoyed from his latest cookbook The Best of Chef at Home which I reviewed in an earlier post.  His secret? Frozen butter! It’s an old pastry chef’s trick that has served him well. Butter tastes great and adds that flavour that is just essential when baking biscuits. When the butter is frozen it becomes very easy to shred into the dough. This allows for a very flaky biscuit. I broke the biscuits in half and topped them with Greek yogurt from Pike Place Market in Seattle as well as some homemade raspberry preserves. These flaky morsels did not last long and are so versatile. I have made them several times adding different cheeses and herbs.

Be thankful that you don't already have everything you desire.
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?
Be thankful when you don't know something,
for it gives you the opportunity to learn.
Be thankful for the difficult times. During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations,
because they give you opportunities for improvement.
Be thankful for each new challenge,
because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes. They will teach you valuable lessons.
Be thankful when you're tired and weary,
because it means you've made a difference.
It's easy to be thankful for the good things.

A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who
are also thankful for the setbacks.
Gratitude can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles,
and they can become your blessings.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving everyone!!!!

**Frozen Butter Biscuits**
by Canadian Chef Michael Smith from the Best of Chef at Home
print Michael's recipe

4 cups of all-purpose flour
2 large spoonfuls of baking powder
2 small spoonfuls of salt
2 sticks/8 oz/ 1 cup of frozen butter
1-1/2 cups of milk
a sprinkle or two of salt and pepper

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together until they’re evenly mixed. Grate the frozen butter into the dry ingredients. Shred it through the large holes of a box grater or potato grater directly into the flour. Toss gently with your fingers until the butter shards are spread evenly throughout the flour.

Pour the milk into the flour mixture and stir with an upside down wooden spoon to form a dough mass. The handle of the spoon is gentler on the dough. Fold the dough over a few times with your hands until all the ingredients come together. If necessary add a few spoonfuls more milk to help gather up any stray flour. This kneading will strengthen the dough a bit but not enough to toughen the biscuits. It will also help them form a crisp crust when they bake.

Pat the dough out on a lightly floured cutting board forming a loose round shape. Cut into wedges – like a pie - or any other shape you’re in the mood for. Position on a baking sheet; sprinkle on a bit of coarse salt and coarsely ground pepper. Bake for fifteen minutes or so. You’ll know they’re done when they turn golden brown. Enjoy at once with lots of brown butter!

You may also enjoy....

Biscones from One Food Year
Biscuits and Gravy by Pioneer Woman Cooks
Best Blogger Tips


  1. They look gorgeous! A great Thanksgiving treat!



  2. Thx for the tip, Micheal and Val!! I make biscuits often and will for sure try this Chef's secret!!!

  3. Thanks for the holiday wishes Val!
    The biscuits look yummy! I'm not good at biscuits....every time I make them they flop so I envy your biscuit making skills!

  4. From the pictures I thought they were scones! I like the idea of using the frozen butter val...must try it in one of my next pastry attempts.

  5. I love biscuits and I don't make them often enough. This is a lovely recipe and I will try it soon.

    And here is to a happy start to the 2009 holiday season ... may it be a healthy one filled with family friends and great food!

  6. I loved the poem, it's a great reminder!

    What a wonderful idea to freeze the butter! Can't wait to try it!

    Lovely biscuits! :D

  7. Dorie Greenspan got me into using frozen butter for biscuits, scones and pastry - what a revelation!
    They look lovely, is it too late for us to be adopted by Americans this weekend? ;-)

  8. Biscuits would not be biscuits without the butter! I like the frozen tip. That jam looks amazing. Great idea to combine it with the greek yogurt for a perfect topping.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  9. Love these biscuits. Happy Thanksgiving a little bit late for Canadians, but none the less sincere.

    P.S. I love your new picture. Very flattering.

  10. I thought these were going to be like the "frozen" butter biscuits I have in my freezer right now.

  11. I waasn't hungry til now.... Happy thanksgiving!!

  12. well, even after stuffing myself silly yesterday, i can always find more room for biscuits. thanks for the words of advice!

  13. these biccies look delicious, not to mention very pretty!

  14. A while back I looked at a Paula Deen cookbook in hopes of seeing if she had a recipe for biscuits. She recommended a brand of frozen biscuits that she said one shouldheat and serve as one's own. When I read "frozen butter biscuits" I thought you too were recommending a brand of frozen, pre-made biscuits. :-D

    Very intereesting recipe. Is it hard to grate frozen butter. If the butter is really hard, I'm afraid I might get aggressive with it and it would melt in my hands. I must try it for myself.

  15. The frozen butter is like grating chocolateso quite easy to do. Just watch the knuckles:D

  16. Excuse me for coming a bit too late to wish you a Happy Thanksgiving - had a very busy week and am catching up only today with all the blogs I love.

  17. Nothing like a warm homemade biscuit. They look lovely.

  18. i did not know this dish thanks for the sharing !! see you soon Pierre

  19. What a perfect recipe for celebration! Looks really great! :)

  20. Happy Thanksgiving to you too... although I know the Canadian one was during October.
    Great tip about the frozen butter, I will keep that in mind ;D.

    Don't know why didn't you show your face before. You are Beautiful!!!

  21. Yum! Not a whole lot beats a great biscuit. And with the Greek yogurt & homemade preserves these are definitely great!

  22. There are folks who swear by the frozen butter method for flakier biscuits! Gotta try this.

  23. I have a question about these - although I know i'm late to the party. The recipe says to put the dough out forming a loose round shape. Do you roll it out at all? It has baking soda so I think it's going to rise anyway...

  24. Hey Summer, The recipe asks you to "pat" out the dough out forming a loose round shape, that means "pat" or press it out. A "pat" calls for a lighter touch than a "press". I guess that is our Canadian expresssion:D


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