This is a guest blog post by Sarah-Jane Bedwell, R.D., L.D.N.
When I was a very little girl, my grandfather had a heart attack. Thankfully, he survived, but the doctor told him and my grandmother that he would have to change the way he was eating, if he wanted to live much longer. Twenty some odd years later, he is still alive, thanks in a large part to my grandmother changing the way she cooked.
Raised in middle Tennessee, my grandmother’s style of cooking was decidedly southern, full of biscuits, cornbread, and my grandfather’s favorite: rich desserts! However, after the heart attack, my grandmother re-taught herself how to cook the southern classics in a healthier way.
In this recipe for buttermilk biscuits I use some of her heart-healthy baking techniques. I make the biscuits with heart healthy canola oil and 100% whole grain pastry flour, which makes them just as fluffy and tasty as traditional biscuits, but with less saturated fat and more fiber! My grandmother is my inspiration when it comes to cooking and baking because she doesn’t just cook healthy foods, she cooks healthy foods full of flavor!
Try making these biscuits for your upcoming holiday dinner! They are easy to make and enjoyed by all!
Better Buttermilk Biscuits:
Start by gathering your ingredients:
1 cup 100% whole grain pastry flour (You can find this in most grocery stores, and it is better than regular 100% whole wheat flour for baking because it is a finer flour (like a cake flour) and doesn’t create a hard, dense product like regular whole wheat flour can).
1 cup all purpose flour (I use a blend of 100% whole grain pastry flour and all purpose flour to create the lightest, fluffiest healthy biscuit possible).
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
4tbsp. canola oil
3/4 cup low-fat buttermilk, plus extra for brushing on tops of biscuits
Then, preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Sift flour and measure carefully into a large mixing bowl. If you don’t have a sifter, try my trick for using a colander and shaking it back and forth over the bowl to sift it. Sifting is important for a fluffy biscuit.
Mix flour and other dry ingredients together well with wire whisk. Make a well in the center of the dry mixture, and pour in the low-fat buttermilk and the canola oil. Low-fat buttermilk is 1% milk fat and although it is creamy and rich, it is still low in saturated fat. I chose to use canola oil for this recipe because it is a heart healthy oil, like olive oil, but it has a more neutral flavor, so it lets the other flavors of the biscuits come to the forefront.
Stir the low-fat buttermilk and canola oil into the dry ingredients with a fork until the liquids are completely incorporated into the dry ingredients until it forms a ball of dough. You should be able to work the dough with your hands, so add a bit more flour if it is too sticky or a bit more buttermilk if it is too dry.
Place ball of biscuit dough onto a lightly floured surface (I like to put wax paper down on my surface and then flour it to make clean-up easier) and knead quickly about 10 times, but don’t overwork the dough.
Roll out with a floured rolling pin or pat out with your hands until dough is about 1/2 inch thick and then cut into circles with a floured biscuit cutter (if you don’t have a biscuit cutter, the rim of a small juice glass will work great).
Place biscuits just barely touching into a cake pan lightly sprayed with cooking spray and brush tops of biscuits lightly with a little buttermilk (biscuits are often brushed with melted butter before baking to turn the tops golden brown while baking, but brushing them with low-fat buttermilk will create this same effect). Bake 10-12 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Serve warm. Enjoy!
Serving Size: 1 biscuit; Calories: 110; Total Fat: 5g; Sat. Fat: 0g; Cholesterol 0mg; Sodium 290mg; Total Carbohydrate 15g; Fiber 3g; Sugars 1g; Protein 3g; Calcium 8% DV; Iron 4% DV
Sarah-Jane Bedwell, R.D., L.D.N. is a Southern dietitian, foodie, and media personality known as Nashville’s Nutrition Expert. She also is the “Eat Like Me” blogger for SELF Magazine. Visit her online at sarahjanebedwell.com .