This weekend's biscuit project was a double-feature. After an inspiring episode of Master Chef this past Monday, I wanted to be adventurous and take a risk. One of the chefs made this amazing-looking French pastry with an egg baked right inside. It had been poached in such a way that when you cut into the pastry, the egg yolk ran and blended with a creamy wine sauce. Swoon.
Grocery shopping is less strategic for me, now that I don't have to plan out the week's lunches with the same attention to detail as I did before. So when I sampled some store-made pimento cheese, I had a flash of inspiration. What if I folded pimento cheese right into the biscuit dough? I'm brilliant! I grabbed a tub, lots of butter, and a bag of flour just in case I might be running low.
For my base recipe this time, I consulted my Better Homes & Gardens and went with the "Biscuits Supreme" recipe. Lots of butter, lots of baking powder. It called for cream of Tartar, but I decided to follow the sage advice of my great Grandmother Amlin and use baking soda, mixed right into the buttermilk. Holy cow, the dough starts rising as you're cutting it, quite lovely!
There's a reason they say not to over-work your dough: the biscuits won't rise as much. With the addition of about a cup of pimento cheese, the biscuits didn't rise as high, but they were still light, flaky, and addicting. I sprinkled the tops with cayenne pepper.
Another new tip I learned, also from Granny Amlin: melt butter in your cast iron skillets, lots of butter. As you put each biscuit on the pan, put it top-side down to coat the top in butter before flipping on the correct side to cook. Then the tops are crispy and golden-brown. Ahhhh.
I used my cast iron griddle this time, it worked just as well.
My next biscuit recipe was a sweet biscuit. I used a half a cup of sugar in the recipe. When I laid the biscuits into the skillets, I made a small indentation in each with a spoon, and dropped a dallop of raspberry strawberry jam in the center of each biscuit. The jam bubbles by the end, and makes for the perfect breakfast-on-the-go. I know because I had two(!) after my run this morning.
Look how nicely they rise!
And last but not least - the egg-speriment. Alas, the egg was almost completely raw and I couldn't eat it. But it looked beautiful - I used the pimento cheese dough. I want to continue working on egg pastries after my biscuit project ends.
Sometimes it's fun not to follow instructions or a recipe, and just try something, even if it doesn't work out how you thought it would.