I would like to make some biscuit dough but cant use any baking soda or powder, and was wondering what to use instead so it will rise and be flaky
I spent half of my life around chemicals in the racing game and it comes back to get ya, so I cant have any stuff that makes CO2 in my foods or nitrates etc
Been cooking for 50 plus yrs but new to the Baking stuff and just doing my home work for giving it a try
Like biscuits and butter and honey, and for dinner with some pork gravy
I think you're out of luck for the traditional foods: cakes, cookies, quick breads.
Well, there are a few quickbreads that use egg and quick high heat to flash cook the egg and trap the steam. Popovers, Dutch Babies and such. I think that's your main option is this class of thing.
Give popovers a try with a standard muffin pan. And if you like it, get some of these cast iron pans to get serious about it.
Get two. A standard batch of popover batter is based on 2 eggs. make a batch and a half and you'll fill two of these pans just right. Preheat them in the oven at least 20 minutes so they're good and hot. Cook's Illustrated disagrees with me and likes to use glass ones from room temperature in a cold oven. Just for full disclosure.
Cheese popovers are also very good.
You can use a standard cupcake/muffin tin. The problem in my experience is that they don't have the thermal mass to do the job as well as these other pans and they release much more poorly. Less "pop" as well.
I'm not particularily fond of baking powder/soda, so I try and avoid it when I can.
When I make scones, I use a weird technique. If you're new to baking, you might not know about puff pastry, but there are a zillion ways to make it. One way is the "Blitz" or lightning method, where you cube your butter and mix it into the flour, add your water, and make a right mess. Then you roll it out, fold it, and repeat a few times. It rises quite well--not as good as classic puff pastry, but still quite well. What happens with puff pastry, is you have a thin layer of dough and a thin layer of fat (usually butter), paper thin layers,actually. When you bake, the water in the dough turns to steam, but the fat layers prevent/slow it down from escaping, giving you a decent rise. As it continues to bake, the steam eventually escapes and the fat melts into the dough.
So I use this technique with my scones. If I'm in an extravagant mood, I'll whip some cream, and fold this into the dough--adding another shot of air, which rises when the heat hits it.
Being a Canuck, I confess I don't know much about "biscuits", but it would seem that the doughs of biscuits and scones would be somewhat similar.
I like your plan about layering the dough as I have seen that on the cooking shows too, just thought I could find a easer way
That sounds like my best plan for some thick biscuits with honey for breakfast and Pork gravy for dinner
Pretty neat idea of trapping the steam and making it work for you