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Afternoon Ruby Tea Biscuits

2 cups sifted all-purpose flour 4 teaspoons baking powder 2 tablespoons sugar 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup vegetable shortening 3/4 cup milk 1/2 cup red jam or jelly

Preheat oven to 425. Measure the sifted flour, baking powder, sugar and salt and mix with a fork in a large mixing bowl. Cut in the shortening until the mixture looks like coarse bread crumbs. Add milk and mix into flour with the fork, but only until the mixture forms a soft ball. Place the ball of dough on a lightly floured surface and knead it 12 times. Rub some flour on a rolling pin and roll out the dough until it's about 1/4" thick. With a large biscuit cutter, cut circles, very close together, in the dough. Use a straight downward motion and don't twist the cutter. With the spatula lift half the circles, one at a time, onto the cookie sheet. Arrange about 1" apart. With a small biscuit cutter (smaller than the one used to cut out the biscuits) cut a hole in the rest of the circles to make rings and lift out the centers with the spatula. Set these little centers aside. With the spatula place the rings on top of the large cirlces on the cookie sheet. Put a teaspooonful of jam or jelly in the middle of each ring. Bake the biscuits 12 to 15 minutes, or until puffed and slightly golden. Take the cookie sheet from the oven. Immediately lift the biscuits from the cookie sheet with the spatula. Yield: 12 servings

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