Category Archives: butter

Southern Biscuits

When I visit my sister and brother-in-law I always like to cook a big Sunday breakfast. They love it when I make a giant tray of biscuits that they can feast on all week after I’m gone. This are a true southern staple.

Southern Biscuits
2 sticks butter, room temperature
4 cups flour
3 tablespoons baking powder
3 teaspoons salt
1 cup cream
1 cup whole milk
1 tablespoon butter, melted

Pre-heat the oven to 450 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, mix the butter, flour, baking powder and salt with a fork. Once the butter is fully incorporated into the flour and resembles course meal, add the cream and milk. Quickly mix the liquid into the dry ingredients and turn out onto a floured surface. Squeeze the dough together until it forms a full mound of dough. Roll the dough out with a rolling pin to 1-inch thickness. Using a glass or a biscuit cutter cut out biscuits and re-roll the dough after each round of cuts until the dough is all gone. Place the biscuits onto a silpat baking mat on a cookie sheet. The edges of the biscuits should touch. Paint the top of the biscuits with the melted better and a pastry brush. You can sprinkle the biscuits with parmesan cheese, cracked pepper or herbs if you want. Cook the biscuits in the middle of the oven for 20 minutes or until the biscuits are golden brown.

Fall Festival

My co-worker Karen went apple picking the other weekend. She was kind enough to bring back a ton of fresh apples and I turned them into this delicious and decedent pie.

Caramel Toffee Apple Pie

Caramel:
1 cup sugar
½ cup cream
1 teaspoon sea salt

Heat the sugar in a heavy medium size saucepan on medium heat. Swirl the sugar occasionally until it liquefies and turns golden brown. Quickly add the cream and salt and return the mixture to the heat. Stir with a wooden spoon to combine. Let it boil to combine about 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Crust:
1 ½ cups flour
1 stick of butter, slightly cooler than room temperature
1 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons sugar
¼ cup water

In a large metal bowl, mix all ingredients, except the water with a fork or pastry cutter. The goal is to incorporate the butter until it is the texture of course meal. Slowly sprinkle in the water and quickly mix. Making sure not to put in too much water, briefly kneed the pastry so that it forms a cohesive ball. Separate into two balls and set aside.

Filling:
½ cup sugar
½ cup brown sugar, packed
3 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon nutmeg
¼ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons lemon juice
6 granny smith apples, pealed

Mix the sugars, flour, spices and lemon juice in a large bowl. Slice the apples very thinly on a mandolin. After each apple is sliced, add it to the sugar mixture and coat to toss.

Streusel Topping:
5 toffee bars, chopped
1 tablespoon flour
½ stick of butter
¼ cup milk chocolate chips

Mix all of the ingredients till combined and the butter is evenly distributed. Set aside.

Assembly:
Preheat the over to 450 degrees.

On a well-flowered counter top, roll out the first round and place it in the bottom of a 10 inch glass pie pan. Roll out the second half and leave on the counter until after the pie is filled.

Drizzle the bottom of the pan with some of the caramel mixture. Then fill the pie with all of the apples. Drizzle the tops of the apples with more caramel sauce. (You will most likely have caramel sauce left over, save it for a dip for apple slices.) Then pack the stop with the streusel topping.

Place the second crust over the top of the apples Fold the top crust over the bottom and then crimp the edges so that the juices do not escape. Place on a baking sheet and put into the middle over.

Bake for 15 minutes at 450 degrees then reduce the oven temperature to 350. Cook for another 30 minutes until the crust is golden brown.

Summertime Refreshment

I think that lime is one of the best flavors. When you bite into these cookies they are both sweet rich and refreshing. I made them up for a work event. I think that some people where turned off by the combination of lime and white chocolate, but I can assure you that they are amazing.

White Chocolate Lime-wiches

Cookies:
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 lime, juice and zest

Preheat oven to 375° F.

Combine flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add in the lime juice and zest and beat to combine. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Drop by rounded teaspoons onto ungreased baking sheets. 

BAKE for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Filling:
1/2 stick unsalted butter at room temperature
1/4 cup butter flavored vegetable shortening
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
juice and zest of 2 limes

Put the butter and shortening in a mixing bowl and, at low speed, gradually beat in the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and limes, until blended. Turn the mixer up to high and beat for 5 minutes more, until fluffy.

Coating:
1 pound white chocolate, chopped or morsels

Place the chocolate into a metal bowl and place over a pot filled with water on medium heat. Mix the chocolate with a rubber spatula every few minutes to help melt. Keep heating the chocolate until it is melted; be careful not to burn it.
Place the same bowl into a larger bowl that contains ice. Keep mixing the chocolate to fold in the cooling parts until the chocolate is well tempered.

Assembly:
Arrange all fo the cookies in pairs, so that each cookie pair is about the same size.

Place about 1-2 teaspoons of filling in the middle of one of the cookies. Add another cookie on top and gently squeeze to evenly distribute the filling. Fill and assemble all of the cookie pairs.

Dip half of the sandwich cookie into the tempered white chocolate and either place on a wire rack, or a large piece of parchment paper to dry completely.

The Way to a Co-Worker’s Heart is Through the Stomach

Last summer I was known at my job for being a baker. I would make cookies and cupcakes. Now that I’m back, but on a different team, I wanted to endear myself to my new co-workers. At the same time I was hoping that being nice would help me get a computer faster and relieve my boredom! You can make this into little 1 inch pies or do a larger mini tart using a 4 inch spring form pan or pie dish.

Mini Peach and Blackberry Tarts

Crust:
3 cups flour
2 stick of butter, slightly cooler than room temperature
2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons sugar
½ cup water

Mix the flour, butter, salt and sugar in a mental bowl with a fork. Mash in the butter until it forms course meal. Gradually add in the water, you may not need all of it. Mix the dough together till it forms a ball. Pinch off 1-inch balls of the dough and press it out into a flat layer with your hands. Fill mini muffin tins with the dough, fluting the edges to make mini pie shells.

Filling:
2 bags frozen peaches, thawed
1 bag frozen blackberries, thawed
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon
1/2 cup flour

Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees. Chop the peaches into chunks, about the same size as the blackberries. Mix all of ingredients in a large bowl. Using a spoon, being careful to not pick up too much liquid, fill the pie shells with 3 pieces of peach and 1 blackberry.

Cook the pies for about an hour. Once the shells are golden brown, remove from the oven. Let them cool in the tins for 5 minutes then move them to a rack and cool completely.

Southern Comfort

I had some buttermilk left over from another project. As far as I’m concerned there are two preferred uses for buttermilk: fried chicken or biscuits. I love biscuits. They are super easy and a crowd favorite.

Southern Buttermilk Biscuits

3 cup flour
½ cup dry powdered milk
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons baking powder
3 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons black pepper
½ teaspoon cream of tartar
½ cup butter flavored shortening
1 cup buttermilk
½ cup melted butter, divided in half

In a large bowl, with a fork, mix the flour, powdered milk, sugar, baking powder, salt, pepper and cream of tartar till the pepper looks evenly distributed. Add the shortening and mash it into flour mixture. Keep mixing in the shortening until the flour gets an even course meal texture and it all looks slightly yellow.

Preheat the over to 450 degrease.

Stir in half of the melted butter and then the buttermilk. Switch to mixing with your hands. The mixture will be sticky. Let it sit for 5 minutes. Then turn onto a floured surface and need the dough till smooth. Roll out the dough to a ½ inch thickness and cut into biscuits with a glass or round cookie cutter. Place the biscuits onto a silpat lined baking sheet. Bake for about 15-20 minutes until the biscuits are golden brown. Brush with the remaining melted butter.

Sausage and White Gravy

1 package frozen breakfast sausage links, thawed
2 cups milk
salt and pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon sage
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons milk

Cook the sausage in a large skillet. Make sure you brown each side of the link. Remove the sausage to a plate. Add the milk to the same pan, deglazing the pan. Season the milk with salt, pepper, garlic powder and sage. Cook the mixture until boiling.

Mix the flour with the remaining milk and whisk it into the hot milk mixture. Keep stirring to thicken. Season with more salt and pepper to taste.

Southern Comfort

I made biscuits for Barbara’s Southern lucky New Year’s dinner party. I was sure to make extra so that I had my own special treat!

Biscuits with Sausage and Gravy

Biscuits
2 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
4 tablespoons butter
1 cup cream
Freshly ground pepper
Turkey breakfast sausage
2 cups milk
3 tablespoons flour

Heat oven 450 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Cut in butter. Mix in cream. Kneed the dough by folding it over and over and over again to build in layers. Using a glass cut out even shapes. Briefly re-work the scraps into another round of dough and continue to cut out biscuits. Brush with cream and sprinkle with pepper. Bake for 15 minutes or until brown.

In a large skillet brown the turkey sausage; turn once to brown on multiple sides. Once the sausage is cooked, removed it from the pan and set aside. Add the milk to the pan to deglaze. Add salkt and pepper and scrape all of the sausage bits into the gravy.

In a small bowl mix the flour with just enough water to make a smooth slurry. Whisk the flour mixture into the milk. Constantly stir as the heat thickens the gravy.

Using a fork, cut open each biscuit, serve with the gravy and sausage.