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Frozen biscuits take the gold medal

By KATHY SAUNDERS
Published November 16, 2005

No question, biscuits hot from the oven are delicious. That's true, even when the biscuits come from a freezer bag.

Taster's Choice sampled four varieties of frozen Southern-style biscuits, which went straight from the freezer to the oven. All were winners, and our tasters said they would buy any of the brands we tried.

The favorite was the one in the plainest package - Mary B's, purchased at Publix ($2.69 for 12).

"These are soooo good I can hear Sherman march," said one judge. "They are like Sundays in Georgia that make you forget about the recent unpleasantness up North."

Mary B's biscuits got 74 of a possible 80 points, one of the highest scores tasters have ever given.

"The tops are nice and golden brown," said another taster.

"A great sandwich biscuit," added another.

We baked each according to manufacturer's directions.

The second choice, with 67 points, was Pillsbury ($4.79 for 20).

Judges liked the fluffiness as well as the crispy crust and the "high rise" of the rolls.

"They scream for gravy," said one judge.

Close behind with 64 points was Kash n' Karry ($2.50 for a 12-biscuit bag).

One judge liked the moistness of Kash n' Karry biscuits, applauding the use of shortening.

"These are golden yummy," he said.

The fourth sample, from Publix, was too salty for a couple of panelists. But, Publix still received 57 points. And, all of the judges cleaned their plates!

Publix biscuits ($2.49 for 12) were smaller and a bit drier than the others, although they still had a homemade, crumbly texture.

Judges concluded that all of the biscuit brands would satisfy consumers.

One judge even asked for leftover strawberry preserves from a previous Taster's Choice session to polish off his biscuit.

I served the leftovers to my family with dinner. They buttered and devoured them within minutes.

- Panelists: Nan Jensen, registered dietitian with Pinellas County Extension; Gary Kawalec, chef/owner of Supper Club; Julie Overton, personal chef; and Bob Devin Jones, artistic director of Studioat620 in St. Petersburg. All products were tasted blind.

Send suggestions for product testing to Taste section, St. Petersburg Times, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731 or e-mail them to krieta@sptimes.com Please put TEST SUGGESTION in the subject line. To read past Taster's Choice columns, go to www.sptimes.com/food

FROZEN BISCUIT RANKINGS

No. 1: Mary B's.

No. 2: Pillsbury.

No. 3: Kash n' Karry.

[Last modified November 15, 2005, 11:12:06]

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