Icebox Biscuits

1 package active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water (105F to 115F)
5 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 Tbsp. kosher salt
3/4 cup lard, chilled, or 1/2 cup shortening plus 1/4 cup butter, chilled
2 cups buttermilk, chilled
3 Tbsp. melted butter


  1. Preheat oven to 450F. Dissolve the yeast in the warm water, let stand 5 minutes.

  2. In bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and salt. Whisk to mix well. Using your fingers, quickly work chilled lard into dry ingredients until flour mixture resembles large peas. Stir in dissolved yeast and buttermilk; mix just until well blended.

  3. Turn dough onto floured surface; knead six or seven times. Roll out to 1/2-inch thickness. Pierce rolled dough completely through at 1/2-inch intervals with floured dinner fork. Cut out biscuits with 2-1/2-to 3-inch cutter, taking care not to twist cutter, which will seal the sides of the biscuit and inhibit rising.

  4. Place biscuits on greased baking sheets, about 1/2-inch apart. Cover with tea towel; let rise 30 to 45 minutes, until almost doubled.

  5. Bake in preheated oven 10 to 12 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking, until biscuits are golden brown. Remove from oven. Brush generously with melted butter. Serve hot. Makes about 2-1/2 dozen biscuits.

  6. Make Ahead Tip: Dough can be made ahead and stored tightly wrapped in the refrigerator for 3 days in advance. After rolling and cutting the refrigerated dough, you don’t have to wait for the biscuits to fully rise before baking, but you should allow them to come to room temperature first.