Cream Biscuits

This is a recipe I developed while working in the Gourmet magazine test kitchen. It is so easy and versatile that I use it as the basis for any biscuit-related recipe I make. See Apricot Scones (p 302) and Biscuit Sticky Buns (p 303) in Sara Moulton Cooks at Home, and Egg, Canadian Bacon, and Cheddar Biscuit Sandwiches (p 103) in Sara’s Secrets for Weeknight Meals.

Makes 4 sandwich-size biscuits or up to 12 smaller ones

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 to 3 tablespoons sugar, optional
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1 to 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Lightly grease a cookie sheet.Stir together the flour, sugar (if using), baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Pour in enough of the cream to just form a dough.

On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough gently several times and divide into 4 to 12 equal balls as desired. Pat out each ball to make a 3/4-inch-thick round on the cookie sheet.

Bake 15 to 20 minutes, depending on size, or until pale golden. Transfer to a rack and let cool slightly.

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