Last week I was privileged to be a part of Midstate Mills Biscuit Day in Newton, North Carolina.
Number One – what a cute little town! The festivities took place right in the center of this quiet little gem, where streets are slow and parking is easy.
Number Two – Midstate Mills folks are amazing. Southern, sweet, and a joy to be around! (Kind of like their biscuits!) It’s a family owned and operated business, steeped in history and surprisingly small. Only about 100 employees making all that flour and all of those mixes! It’s a pretty overwhelming operation, from the farmer’s pulling in with their wares, having their product immediately sampled and tested for quality in the small lab, to the storage, to the breaking down of grains, to the packaging…it’s a very organized and precise system. And shockingly CLEAN! I expected to see flour dust everywhere…but I was wrong!
When I first began blogging, I never thought I would be invited into the middle of operations such as this. I’ve toured egg farms, working cattle farms, corn fields, bourbon distilleries, and now, a flour plant. Remember how exciting it was on Mr. Rogers when we got to watch the movies on how things are made? Like crayons and bubble gum? Well, watching the rolls of paper at Midstate Mills get glued, shaped, filled with product and closed, then passed on down the line to be placed on flats and wrapped in plastic was like a Mr. Rogers waking dream. It’s pretty amazing.
Biscuit Day was full of giveaways, demonstrations, and of course, free biscuits. Delicious biscuits! Now, I hate to admit this, but I will. I am not a biscuit maker. In the past, I tried, and got one of two results: fally aparty or just plain hard. And, despite having a couple of bags of Midstate Mills Formula L Biscuit Mix in my cabinet, I had yet to ever try it. Part of the hesitation was due to the previous biscuit results, and part was in my reluctance to use anything with the word MIX on it. As if I am too good to use a mix, versus making something from scratch.
I am obviously an idiot.
Every biscuit at Biscuit Day was made with the Formula L mix. It’s basically flour, shortening flakes, and a few rising agents mixed in. Toss that with some milk, buttermilk, or cream, fold it a few times…perfect biscuits.
You have no idea how sad I am about this. All this time, I could have been eating biscuits. I made some that very night, after driving home from North Carolina. They had made it look so easy…could it really be?? From the opening of the bag to the first bite took under 15 minutes. Sad, sad, sad.
But now I know. And now YOU know, too. The mixture recipe is on the back of the bag, and I hope you will look for it in your local grocer. It’s available here in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and a few other southern states…and I HOPE it’s in yours. Look for it, it will change your life!