Why were Ellie Mae's biscuits funny?

No, not THEM. The ones she baked, you perv!

I made biscuits for the first time today. For some reason the recipe called for cream of tartar, which I didn’t have, in addition to baking powder, which already contains it. I decided it was a misprint and soldiered on.

There didn’t seem to be enough liquid, so I plopped out the part that was moist and tossed the leftover dry stuff.

I didn’t have a rolling pin, but pushed it out with my fingers.

They were ugly and would probably have risen better with the cream of tartar, but they were perfectly edible.

Were Ellie Mae’s inedible biscuits funny because any moron can blow the recipe and still have something the family will eat? Are biscuits really that idiotproof?

Something I learned back in high school - baking powder and baking soda aren’t the same thing.

As soon as I remembered they were inedible, that was the reason I was going to offer. Remember, they actually look like biscuits, so it can’t be that she just left out an ingredient or made a mistake.

I’ve seen this trope with a lot of baked goods, actually. And, for once, TVTropes doesn’t seem to have it, The closest they have is Lethal Chef, but that’s what Ellie Mae is, not her food.

IMS, Southern women prided themselves on making their biscuits feather light and melt in the mouth good. No doubt, Ellie Mae’s were rock hard and tasted bad, even if they did look like biscuits.

Ellie Mae never cooked one items that was edible. The joke was in that and the way they demonstrated the failures. I believe Jedd used her flapjacks to repair his shoes in one episode.

Even I know that. That’s why I triple-checked what they said.

Even Jethro when he was hungry(er) would not eat Ellie Mae’s cooking. That’s how bad it was.

Biscuits are usually idiot proof, but I think you’re right in guessing that the recipe writer should have said baking soda, unless there was some other acidic ingredient.

For what it’s worth, the biscuit recipe I use calls for both baking powder and cream of tartar.

I recall one episode where the biscuits ( or whatever ) were breathing.

“I’m scared Paw!”

“I’ll take care of it Jethro!”


Hmmm, so I guess biscuits require that little extra bit of lift!

Does it have buttermilk?

Ellie Mae Clampett and Lisa Douglas should have had a cook-off.

Followed by a cat fight, at the end of which they both fall into the cement pond.


The problem with this suggestion is that, unless Ellie Mae has broken both arms, both legs, multiple ribs, and is suffering from the flu immediately previous to the catfight, it is impossible to imagine Lisa Douglas lasting more than five seconds or doing anything other than being tossed into the pool and forced to beg for permission to climb out. Ellie Mae regularly beat up men twice her size. I recall more than one occasion when she was dating less-than-gentlemanly types; no one ever worried about HER getting hurt.

Nitpick: cement pond.

Well, Akane Tendo might be a fair match, then, both for the cook-off and the subsequent catfight. Ranma would be unable to avoid the cement pond, of course.

Too much flour and not enough shortening can yield some pretty tough biscuits, so they are not idiot-proof.

Well, this needed more shortening, more milk, and less time with me working the dough. It’s the last time I follow a recipe. :wink:

Now I’m hungry for a good biscuit.

First of all if you remember Granny’s cookbooks didn’t contain standard measures. When Miss Jane came over to cook for the Clampetts, she found Granny’s cookbook had things like “a pinch of this,” and a “smidgen of that” and Miss Jane also failed at making Red Eye Gravy and Biscuits. And Miss Jane was a Vasser graduate.

The other comical thing was the Clampetts never came to the realization that, though a girl may need the ability to cook to land a man in the hills, Elly Mae had millions (she got 25% of Jed’s money which at the end was 100 million so Elly Mae had 25 million of her own) and was beautiful. So she didn’t need to cook and clean and sew, 'cause she could pay people to do that. To the Clampetts, a girl needed to clean and cook and sew to land a man regardless how pretty she was.

Also Elly Mae was basically a feminist, she wouldn’t cotton to taken second place to a man. And that is why Jed often wanted to take her back to the hills, 'cause the men in Hollywood couldn’t stand up to Elly Mae and Elly Mae wasn’t gonna back down to no man.