Recipe for Helen’s Real Angel Biscuits follows the story.
“Good mornin’ Lil’ Miss. What you got in store fo’ today?” Ethel asked Helen as the child slipped into her chair at the kitchen table.
“Not so hot.”.Sallee and Gordy always get to spend the night out. Nobody ever asks me.” The child sighed as she put her chin down on her stacked hands in front of her and waited for Ethel to put her breakfast in front of her.
“You ain’t much for cookin’ I know. But today I was gonna be makin’ some angel biscuits. Since you is mighty fond of ’em I wondered if you’d like t’ help me.
Helen’s creative little mind jumped to a picture clouds bedecked with celestial beings shaped breads and agreed without giving it another thought. As she positioned her scrambled eggs according to curd size, she gazed up, “I don’t have to touch the flour do I?”
“Not if you doan want,” she shot the child a quizzical side eye.
The meal arranged to her liking she started with the biggest pieces and worked her way down the line. “It’s just I hate the way that stuff feels, makes my skin all crawly. She shuddered before shoveling an inch of her lined-up food on her fork, “right?” Stuffed the eggs into her mouth and chewed in deep contemplation. “You make the dough, and I’ll cut out the biscuits. Okay?”
“Yes’am.” While the child ate, she had been gathering the necessary supplies together on the counter. “I’s ready when you is.”
Popping the last forkful into her mouth, the girl pushed her chair back from the table, and brought her almost clean plate over to Ethel who stood by the sink watching chuckling the little girl. Helen brushed her hands off one another before she commenced looking in a cupboard.
“What you lookin’ fo?”
With her head, in the cabinet, she answered, “the Christmas cookie cutters.”
“Why you need ’em?”
“You said we were gonna make angel biscuits.” Emerging with the box in her hand the girl shook her head, “how’re ya gonna do that without the cutter?” She placed the box on the floor in front of her and rooted around in it until she found what she was looking for then held it up to Ethel. “This one!”
“Bless my soul I never, you is somethin’,” she laughed as she sifted the dry ingredients together into a bowl.
The Real Angel Biscuits
Preheat oven to 400°
- 1 cake of yeast or 2 packs dry
- 2 – 3 T. warm water
- 5 c. flour
- 3 t. baking powder
- 4 T. sugar
- 1 t. each of salt, and baking soda
- 1 c. shortening
- 2 c. buttermilk
Dissolve yeast in water. Sift dry ingredients into a large bowl then using a fork cut in the shortening. Add buttermilk and yeast mixture, with your hands, mix until it starts to form a ball. Knead on a floured surface for a few minutes. Roll out to the desired thickness and cut with an angel cookie cutter. Put on a greased cookie sheet and bake ‘til nicely browned.