Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Cheesey Buttermilk Biscuits

This is actually from Martha Stewart's Hors D'oeuvres Handbook, which by the way, is an excellent reference if you like to cook.  This is her White Cheddar, Sage, and Buttermilk Biscuits, p 350.

So the story today is that here in the deep south, we have 2 days off from school because of a threat of wintery and icy conditions.  So for me that is code for 2 fulls days to bake and cook.  Yesterday, I bought a few things I needed in order to get cracking and first up is Cheddar Buttermilk Biscuits and scrambled eggs.  I don't have sage so sans the sage.  I'm not sure my son would like it anyway and he needs to put meat on his bones!!

This recipe goes together in the time it takes to heat the oven to 400, so turn it on first.  Make sure 1 Stick Unsalted Butter is sitting out so it becomes cool, but not room temperature.   Line a sheet pan with parchment paper cut to fit.

To a bowl add, 2 Cups Flour (I used 1/2 Cup Whole Wheat Flour and 1 1/2 Cups All Purpose Flour).  To that add 4 tsp Baking Powder, 1 TBL Sugar, 1 tsp Kosher Salt, 1/2 tsp Cream of Tarter.  Stir with a wire whip to combine.

Cut Butter into quarters the long way and then the short direction making 1/2" cubes and drop in flour mixture.  Cut with a pastry blend.  If you don't have one, improvise using 2 knives in a cutting motion in opposite directions.  This should resemble coarse cornmeal.  Stir in 1 Cup Cheddar Cheese.  Today I used 4-Cheese Mexican because it's what I have on hand.  Add 2/3 Cup Buttermilk.  Stir until just combined.

Dump dough onto a floured pastry cloth and shape into a rectangle.  Fold the dough onto itself, top 1/3 and bottom 1/3.  (As you can see by the photos, by dough has some ever so visible layers as a result of the folding).  Re-shape into a rectangle.  For shaping, I place my hands outside of the pastry cloth and shape using the cloth so my hands don't heat up the butter.  Roll the dough so it is an even consistency, a healthy 1" thick, while shaping til you are satisfied.  That is all the handling this dough should get or it will become tough. 

I bought this cool rectangle mold in Austin last year and thought I would make a new shape.  Once cut, place on parchment and brush with 1/2 & 1/2 and dust with Sanding Sugar.  Bake for 15-18 minutes until golden brown. 
Let rest a minute or 2 and devour at once!!

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