If you have followed my blog very long you will know that I love making recipes that are fast and easy and look like a million bucks! This is just such a recipe.
I saw a Taste of Home recipe for pull-apart garlic bread. The cook sharing the recipe is Carol Shields, from Summerville Pennsylvania. Five ingredients, prep time 10 minutes, raise for 1 hour and bake for 30 minutes.
My step-son Bryan was coming for a visit and he sent me a picture of a mile-high biscuit from a restaurant in California, commenting about the “best biscuit” he ever ate. To a slightly competitive cook that was basically throwing down the gauntlet!
Whenever the kids come home the Chief’s biscuits and gravy are always on the breakfast menu. My Chief gravy maker use to make the entire breakfast of biscuits and the gravy. But for many years now I have been the biscuit maker and he makes the gravy.
I only just realized I have never posted the Chief’s gravy recipe. He says it takes his special touch. I agree. However, I am going to share his recipe with you and you can add your special touch to make it your own!
I decided since I needed to crank my biscuits “up a notch” I would go looking for a good ol’ southern buttermilk recipe. I found the one I wanted on Food.com.
I chose it because I like the idea of basting the biscuits in buttermilk before baking. I hadn’t ever done that before. I used my food processor which helps crumble the dough and butter together to resemble course cornmeal.
I added the other ingredients and the buttermilk just until combined. The secret to soft, flakey biscuits is to not overwork the dough. The tendency is to roll it around, pat it, turn it over and keep mixing. However RESIST that temptation and just mix until it holds together.
These biscuits were not mile-high but they are some of the best I’ve ever made! Flaky, soft, buttery, delicious!
Topped with homemade strawberry jam or The Chief’s gravy … either way you won’t be disappointed. I’ve included both recipes below.
My husband was a cook in the navy and he perfected his gravy years ago. Today this gravy is legend in our family!
Author: By Catherine Daugherty
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 8 servings
1 lb. favorite breakfast sausage (We use Williams or Jimmy Dean)
2-3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
½ tsp. garlic salt
Salt and Pepper to taste
4 to 6 cups of milk
In a large skillet over medium heat cook sausage until well done, crumble fine or leave a little lumpy to suit your own style of gravy.
Add 2-3 tablespoons of flour stirring well to soak up pan drippings.
Add Worcestershire sauce, garlic salt, salt and pepper to taste.
Stir well over medium heat, mixing everything together.
Start adding milk – a little at a time stirring as you go. You can add 4 to 6 cups milk depending on how much gravy you want to make.
Turn heat down and let simmer on low. We simmer for about 1 hour to meld flavors together. During this time add milk as needed to keep gravy consistency. The longer you simmer the gravy the browner it will get. Keep adding milk to keep gravy texture.
Serve over biscuits or try slicing some fresh garden tomatoes and top with gravy.
You can stretch this recipe out adding more flour and more milk. The end result will be less sausage in the gravy but the flavor will be there.
* The garlic salt and Worcestershire sauce can be increased to suit your taste. Be sure and use a sausage that contains enough fat to give off some grease. Do not use a fat free or low fat sausage.
When your gravy calls for the best biscuits possible, these flaky, soft, buttery biscuits won't disappoint!
Author: Adapted by Catherine Daugherty
Recipe type: Bread
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the board
1⁄2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt or 1 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, very cold
1 cup buttermilk (approx)
Preheat your oven to 450°F.
Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl, or in the bowl of a food processor.
Cut the butter into chunks and cut into the flour until it resembles coarse meal. If using a food processor, just pulse a few times until this consistency is achieved.
Add the buttermilk and mix JUST until combined. If it appears on the dry side, add a bit more buttermilk. It should be slightly wet.
Turn the dough out onto a floured board. Adding flour as necessary, gently PAT (do NOT roll with a rolling pin) the dough out until it's about ½" thick. Fold the dough a couple times, gently press the dough down to a 1 inch thick. Use a round cutter to cut into rounds.
You can gently knead the scraps together and make a few more, but handle as little as possible.
Place the biscuits on a cookie sheet- if you like soft sides, put them touching each other.
If you like"crusty" sides, put them about 1 inch apart- these will not rise as high as the biscuits put close together. Brush with buttermilk.
Bake for about 10-12 minutes- the biscuits will be a beautiful light golden brown on top and bottom.
Do not overbake.
Recipe adapted from Food.com Note: The key to great biscuits is in the handling of the dough. The dough must be handled as little as possible or you will have tough biscuits. The food processor produces superior biscuits, because the ingredients stay colder and there's less chance of overmixing. You also must pat the dough out with your hands, lightly. Rolling with a rolling pin is a guaranteed way to overstimulate the gluten, resulting in a tougher biscuit. FREEZE: You can make these biscuits, cut them, put them on cookie sheets and freeze them. After frozen wrap in airtight container for up to a month. When you want fresh biscuits, simply place them frozen on the cookie sheet and bake at 450°F for about 20 minutes.
Driving into town last week I read this sign in a local church yard. A half truth, a “little white lie”, a twist of truth … is still a whole lie. This has bounced around in my head all through the week, not to mention the many times I drove that road in to town and read the sign.
I am studying 2 John this week. From the study 2 John 1:6 is my memory verse.
Having just gone through Holy Week and Easter weekend, it seems there was a lot of conversation on television, in the grocery stores, and among friends about Jesus. About The Bible and doctrines of the Bible. Often times I feel that when I choose sound Bible doctrine over what is socially accepted I come off as being narrow-minded or judgmental.
Then I read a sign that says a half truth is still a whole lie. In 2 John he encourages Believers to live in truth and walk in love for one another. That is what I want to do … walk in love for all others.
Do you ever struggle with that line between half truth and whole lie or between living in this world but not being of this world?
I pray you have a week filled with the truth imparted to us by the life of Jesus Christ and that each day you find time to walk in love for one another.
Besides being the chief gardener, chief culinary consultant, and chief everything else my sweet husband is also the chief flour grinder. A few years ago we bought a 5 gallon bucket of winter wheat berries. (Yikes, that is a lot of berries!) And so we have ground our own whole wheat flour for some time now.
Recently, the chief ground a big ‘ol plastic container of flour. I got excited about the fresh whole wheat flour. The fragrance was divine and the flour slightly warm from the grinding. It didn’t take me long to have the ingredients in my Kitchen Aid mixer.
I decided to use a recipe that I found on the King Arthur Flour website. After all, they are a flour company, surely their bread recipe would be better than others. “Classic 100% Whole Wheat Bread — who says whole wheat bread has to be dense, dry, and tasteless?” says the company website.
This recipe is a keeper! I still can’t believe there is no white flour in this bread. The crumb is beautiful. Slightly nutty and perfect for sandwiches. And toast. And butter and jam. And honey. And grilled cheese sandwiches. Oh yeah.
The crust is a darker brown than some others. That is because the recipe calls for honey, or molasses, or maple syrup for sweetness. Since I tripled the recipe and made 3 loaves, I used honey, and molasses, AND maple syrup for sweetness. I highly recommend this trio for a perfect trifecta!
Happy Baking! ~Catherine
Jesus said to them, “I am the breadoflife; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. John 6:35
King Arthur knows best when it comes to 100% whole wheat bread! Give this a try, you'll love it!
Serves: 1 loaf
1 to 1⅛ cups lukewarm water*
¼ cup vegetable oil
¼ cup honey, molasses, or maple syrup
3½ cups whole wheat flour
2½ teaspoons instant yeast or 1 packet active dry yeast dissolved in 2 tablespoons of water in the recipe.
¼ cup nonfat dried milk
1¼ teaspoons salt
In a large bowl, combine all of the ingredients and stir until the dough starts to leave the sides of the bowl. For easiest, most effective kneading, let the dough rest for 20 to 30 minutes in the bowl; this gives the flour a chance to absorb some of the liquid, and the bran to soften. Transfer the dough to a lightly greased surface, oil your hands, and knead it for 6 to 8 minutes, or until it begins to become smooth and supple. (You may also knead this dough in an electric mixer or food processor, or in a bread machine programmed for "dough" or "manual.") Note: This dough should be soft, yet still firm enough to knead. Adjust its consistency with additional water or flour, if necessary.
Transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl or large measuring cup, cover it, and allow the dough to rise till puffy though not necessarily doubled in bulk, about 1 to 2 hours, depending on the warmth of your kitchen.
Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled work surface, and shape it into an 8" log. Place the log in a lightly greased 8½" x 4½" loaf pan, cover the pan loosely with lightly greased plastic wrap, and allow the bread to rise for about 1 to 2 hours, or till the center has crowned about 1" above the rim of the pan. Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 350°F.
Bake the bread for 35 to 40 minutes, tenting it lightly with aluminum foil after 20 minutes to prevent over-browning. The finished loaf will register 190°F on an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center.
Remove the bread from the oven, and turn it out of the pan onto a rack to cool. If desired, rub the crust with a stick of butter; this will yield a soft, flavorful crust. Cool completely before slicing. Store the bread in a plastic bag at room temperature.
* Water - use the greater amount in winter or in a dry climate; the lesser amount in summer or a humid climate.
Check out King Arthur website for additional bread baking tips: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/classic-100-whole-wheat-bread-recipe