The purpose of sifting is to break up any clusters that may be in your ingredients. Sifting also allows air to circulate throughout your ingredients. If you do not have a sifter on hand you and need a way to sift dry ingredients for a recipe, a fork or egg whisk will do just fine. Just put your dry ingredients into a bowl and stir them with a fork or egg whisk. Stir until your ingredients are smooth and light. This will quickly fluff up flour, as well as powdered sugar quickly.
Baking Powder Biscuits
2 cups bread flour
5 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon lard
1 cup milk and water in equal parts
1 tablespoon butter
Mix dry ingredients, and sift twice.
Work in butter and lard with fingers tips; slowly add the liquid, mixing with knife to soften dough. It is anyones guess as to exactly how much liquid is needed, as due to the many varieties of flour.
Flip your dough onto a floured board, pat and roll lightly to one-half inch in thickness. Shape with a biscuit-cutter. Place on buttered pan, and bake in hot oven 12 to 15 minutes. Do not bake 'em too slow or the gases will escape before they have done their work - and your biscuits will lack consistency.