Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Bad Blake's Biscuits

Last week was the spring opening of our small town independent movie theatre. On Wednesdays Tom is the volunteer projectionist for the 5:30 2-for-1 show, a job he's done for many years now. The first movie of the season was Crazy Heart, which I loved. Jeff Bridges was so good in the role that this viewer almost forgot he was acting. Bad Blake is a 57 year old musician who has fallen on hard times, and mostly plays the bars and bowling alleys these days. Bridges does his own singing, as does Colin Farrell. Whoever did the casting deserves great credit for putting Farrell in the role of a younger, much more successful singer who learned it all from Blake. And Maggie Gyllenhaal was excellent as journalist, Jean Craddock, raising her four year old son by herself. If you haven't seen it, the dvd comes out this month.

In the movie Bad Blake makes some biscuits for Jean's son. Well, I've been thinking about those biscuits ever since, and did a search to see if there was a recipe anywhere. I found one at a new-to-me site which is just fantastic called, Different Drummer, which reviews movies and posts recipes connected to the films.

Here is her recipe for Bad Blake's Biscuits:

3 c. flour (sifted)
5 tsp. cream of tartar
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
5 tbsp. Crisco
1 to 1 1/4 c. milk

Sift together dry ingredients.
Add Crisco. Crumble together.
Pour in milk.
Spoon on floured board.
Use a bit of this flour to knead your dough.
Roll out 1/2 inch thick. Cut out with biscuit cutter.
Place in greased pan.
Dab a small piece of Crisco on each biscuit.
Bake 18 minutes at 400 degrees until golden brown.

My notes: as you know by now, I always use butter. And because of my new-found love for buttermilk, I used it instead of regular milk. For other recipes, just type buttermilk into the search bar, or look on the sidebar under Sharing Recipes from a Hill Farm.

I baked them a bit longer than 18 minutes. And I put them in a greased 9x13 pan, which I've never done before. I've always used a cookie sheet. I love how they turned out and will probably do this from now on. The taste is out of this world! I've loved other biscuits, and even posted some recipes here, and it just may be that you can't go wrong no matter how you make 'em.

Addendum: I made these May 9, 2013 and today found them way too salty. Next time will reduce one or all of the cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt.


  1. Erin, the movie and the biscuits are great!

  2. Reading your blog while hungry is detrimental to my weight!!!

  3. But not your taste buds, Staci!

  4. This movie is #1 on my must-see list - I've wanted to ever since I heard an NPR interview with T Bone Burnett and they played music samples - sounds awesome!

  5. I don't know which I'm more excited about. Watching the film or making the biscuits!!!! So, you substituted the Crisco with butter, right? Salted or unsalted?

  6. Alison, you will love it!

    Les, yes. salted. I know all cooks use unsalted but I never do.

  7. My recipe for biscuits is a bit different, but I bake them for 18 minutes also. Funny.

  8. Oh, now I am so hungry! Ever consider a career shooting food? Your photo has me regretting my diet.

  9. I love the picture of the donkey and the sheep. I was so happy to see Jeff Bridges receive both a Golden Globe and an Oscar, having watched him again in The Last Picture Show before we knew about his role in Crazy Heart. Thank you for mentioning the Different Drummer site.

  10. Nan, I'm glad you made your biscuits with buttermilk--Bad Blake would have if there'd been any in the icebox. (We still say icebox in the South.) Did you know that baking powder is just baking soda with cream of tartar added? Bad obviously made his own. I think he'd of used lard if there was any of that instead of Crisco--but Crisco is a staple of Southern cooks, more's the pity.

  11. Pamela, I'd like to make your recipe!

    Susan, I'm smilin'!

    Barbara, he has done some great acting over the years. That site is neat, isn't it?!

    Mary Lois, my mother always said 'icebox.' Just seeing it in your note made me smile. You know what? I bought my cream of tartar for your snickerdoodles a while ago!

  12. Hi Nan -
    An interesting little stream of consciousness with biscuits at the end. I'll look for the movie. I am too lazy to make the biscuits myself, though. Indolence is my curse. Love the sheep.

  13. I missed Crazy Heart when it was at our theater so I'm really looking forward to the dvd. I'm a biscuit lover too. I've been experimenting with various biscuit recipes. I'll have to try this one next.

  14. KSV, the biscuits are easy for even the most indolent of us. :<) And worth the effort for that great taste!

    Margot, I'd like to see your recipes - are they on your blog? I love trying new variations.

  15. Let's everybody make Snickerdoodles again!

  16. I saw Crazy Heart, twice. Great movie! Loved the music so much I bought the Soundtrack CD. One day a couple months back while in Portsmouth I ran into one of the set photographers from the Crazy Heart movie. Interesting guy. Would love to have that gig.

  17. I remembered seeing the biscuit recipe the other day and came back to copy it.
    I've made good biscuits for years, more method than measuring.
    We were just gifted with two qts of homegrown strawberries, so a good time to try this recipe.

  18. I've ordered the soundtrack, Ron, because I love the music so much. Did you get the regular or deluxe? I got the latter so I'd hear more songs. Great story about the set photographer guy. How do people get such fun jobs? :<)

    Morning's Minion, I so admire method over measuring, but I've never been able to do it. :<) Lucky you to have those strawberries!!

  19. Bought the regular version of the soundtrack since I already have some of the songs on the deluxe version.

    The photographer I mentioned said he was in a union which is why he got to shoot on the set. Seems that you need to know people to get a foot in the door.

  20. Thanks for coming back with your answer, Ron. I appreciate that.


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