Few things in this world comfort like warm bicsuit on a cold night. When the thermometer drops, all I want to do is lay in bed beneath a down quilt like a bear in hibernation and eat warm biscuits, smothered in butter or cheese or jam. It’s truly a wonder that I don’t weight 500 pounds. (While researching this post, I came across Kitchen Mage, who says, “Biscuits are the power nap of bread baking.” Amen.)
Drop biscuits were the norm growing up, but the biscuits that really get my heart racing are the southern-style ones, flaky and laden with butter. I have yet to master these… mine usually end up looking like hockey pucks or pancakes. The recipes always say that the key is not to handle the dough too much, but I can’t figure out how one is supposed to roll out dough without handling it too much. Any master biscuit makers out there who can advise?
I made pesole last night to go with this cold snap (recipe to come) and hemmed and hawed over what to cook with it. I thought about skillet cornbread, but with the pesole consisting mostly of corn, thought maybe that would be overkill. I also happened to have a block of chipoltle-laden cheddar in the fridge… cheese biscuits, anyone?
Oh, heck yes. Flaky, cheesy, slightly spicy, these were the biscuits I’d been craving. They didn’t get quite as tall as I’d hoped they would, but otherwise they were pretty perfect. One thing I might change in the future is the egg white… I’ve never seen a biscuit recipe that called for an egg wash and think these could have done without that extra step.
Black Pepper Cheese Biscuits
(Adapted from Cooking Light)
2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 TB butter, cut into small pieces
3/4 cup (3 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese (your choice)
3/4 cup skim milk
1 egg white, lightly beaten
Heat oven to 425.
Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and pepper in a bowl; cut in margarine with a pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add cheese; toss well. Add milk, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened.
Turn dough out onto a well-floured surface, and knead 4 or 5 times. Roll dough to 1/2-inch thickness; cut with a 2-inch round (I use a juice glass). Place biscuits 1 inch apart on baking sheets coated with cooking spray, and brush with egg white. Bake for 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Makes 12 or so, depending on the size and thickness of your biscuits.