Biscuits Have Changed

We were talking about biscuits and their function in a meal. I related my Tennessee-born friend’s remark: “My mother made biscuits every day of her life.”

We talked then of biscuits as bread — as a stand-in for yeast-raised bread. Yeast bread most often has a kind of neutrality, mostly noticed if poor, but also if well-made, only excepting those with added cheese. or olives, or seeds.

It seems, then, that rich biscuits, or sweet ones, won’t serve the same neutral function for those eating biscuits every day (or every meal).

Further, a rich biscuit is not a frugal biscuit. And much of rural America, for much of the 20th century, made do with what was at hand.

So we postulated a past of leaner biscuits versus our present fat ones. (This has a parallel with the evolution of the muffin.  More on that anon!)

Here’s our research:

(click to enlarge)

The rough take? Leaner then, richer now. Actually, that’s a lot leaner, a hugely different formula.

We’ll test the old recipes and report back. More observations will follow.

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