Apricot Orange Biscuits


Ingredients

2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoons salt
zest from one orange
1/4 teaspoon coriander or 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 pound (one stick) cold butter

1/2 cup quality dried apricot pieces, finely chopped
1 large orange sectioned and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

3/4 cup buttermilk (approximately)

Directions

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Grease a baking sheet.
1. Measure the flour by scooping some into a bowl and then spooning the flour into the measuring cup. (If you measure packed flour, you will have too much.)
2. Add the baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt, zest, and spice and stir these ingredients into the flour. Slice the cold butter into the flour mixture. Use a pastry knife or two kitchen knives to cut the butter into the flour mixture. Work the butter into the flour mixture until you have a coarse, grainy mixture. Add the apricot and orange pieces.
3. Make a well in the middle of the flour and pour the buttermilk into the flour mixture. Stir until just moistened. You may need to adjust the amount of buttermilk depending on how much juice from the orange is incorporated in the dough.
4. Pat the dough into a 3/4-inch thick slab. Cut out the biscuits and place them on the baking sheet.
5. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes or until the biscuits just begin to brown. Remove the biscuits from the baking sheet and place them on a wire rack to cool.

Baker’s Notes

1. You can learn how to section oranges or grapefruit without the white membrane here.
2. The hot oven gives the dough a burst of steam that helps make the biscuits light and airy.
3. The alkaline baking soda reacts with the acid buttermilk creating bubbles and a lighter texture.
4. The density in your flour mixture will affect the amount of liquid needed. If you spoon light flour into the measure, it should be about right for the liquid noted in the ingredients.
5. Make the biscuits of uniform size and shape so that they will bake uniformly. Protruding bits of dough can be pushed back in with a wet finger.

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