Three Cheese Macaroni

Comfort Food: Lasagna

BBQ Grilled Cheese

Pork Sandwiches

BB Biscuits

Thursday, February 2, 2012


I must admit. It's been a terribly long time since I've participated in the Daring Bakers and I started to feel some sort of withdrawal. No joke. Audax Artifex was our January 2012 Daring Bakers’ host. Aud worked tirelessly to master light and fluffy scones (a/k/a biscuits) to help us create delicious and perfect batches in our own kitchens! His recipe is awesome. It's the perfect size for 2-4 people to enjoy fresh, homemade biscuits in about 20 minutes (I made them big). If you're like me, it might be enough for one person. 

As expected, I changed up the recipe a little so that I could use up some fresh fruit I had around. Ripe bananas are not a thing to waste, after-all. Below is Aud's recipe and mine is to follow. I incorporated one very ripe banana with about 1/2 cup blueberries to the mixture. Since I was adding in moisture with the banana, I used half the butter and I cut the milk in half to start. If the mixture seemed dry, I just added a little more milk until it seemed right. I would recommend adding about 1 tsp. of vanilla to the milk mixture. This will bring out the flavor of the banana and blueberries. I baked my biscuits right in a small (6-inch) cast iron pan. This way, I can bring the biscuits right to the table and serve them hot.

Basic Scones (a.k.a. Basic Biscuits)
created by: Audax Artifex
Servings: about eight 2-inch (5 cm) scones or five 3-inch (7½ cm) scones
Can be doubled

Ingredients
1 cup (240 ml) (140 gm/5 oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
2 teaspoons (10 ml) (10 gm) (1/3 oz) fresh baking powder
¼ teaspoon (1¼ ml) (1½ gm) salt
2 tablespoons (30 gm/1 oz) frozen grated butter (or a
combination of lard and butter)
Approximately ½ cup (120 ml) cold milk
Optional 1 tablespoon milk, for glazing the tops of the scones


Directions
1. Preheat oven to very hot 475°F/240°C/gas mark 9.

2. Triple sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl. (If your room temperature is very hot refrigerate the sifted ingredients until cold.)

3. Rub the frozen grated butter (or combination of fats) into the dry ingredients until it resembles very coarse bread crumbs with some pea-sized pieces if you want flaky scones or until it resembles coarse beach sand if you want tender scones.

4. Add nearly all of the liquid at once into the rubbed-in flour/fat mixture and mix until it just forms a sticky dough (add the remaining liquid if needed). The wetter the dough the lighter the scones (biscuits) will be!

5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board, lightly flour the top of the dough. To achieve an even homogeneous crumb to your scones knead very gently about 4 or 5 times (do not press too firmly) the dough until it is smooth. To achieve a layered effect in your scones knead very gently once (do not press too firmly) then fold and turn the kneaded dough about 3 or 4 times until the dough has formed a smooth texture. (Use a floured plastic scraper to help you knead and/or fold and turn the dough if you wish.)

6. Pat or roll out the dough into a 6 inch by 4 inch rectangle by about ¾ inch thick (15¼ cm by 10 cm by 2
cm thick). Using a well-floured 2-inch (5 cm) scone cutter (biscuit cutter), stamp out without twisting six 2-inch (5 cm) rounds, gently reform the scraps into another ¾ inch (2 cm) layer and cut two more scones (these two scones will not raise as well as the others since the extra handling will slightly toughen the dough). Or use a well-floured sharp knife to form squares or wedges as you desire.

7. Place the rounds just touching on a baking dish if you wish to have soft-sided scones or place the rounds spaced widely apart on the baking dish if you wish to have crisp-sided scones. Glaze the tops with milk if you want a golden colour on your scones or lightly flour if you want a more traditional look to your scones.

8. Bake in the preheated very hot oven for about 10 minutes (check at 8 minutes since home ovens at these high temperatures are very unreliable) until the scones are well risen and are lightly coloured on the tops. The scones are ready when the sides are set.

9. Immediately place onto cooling rack to stop the cooking process, serve while still warm.


BB Biscuits (aka Blueberry-Banana Biscuits)
Adapted from Audax Artifex

Servings: about four large biscuits
Can be doubled

Ingredients
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons fresh baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoons frozen grated butter 
1 medium ripe banana, peeled and mashed
1/2 cup fresh blueberries, dusted in flour
Approximately 1/4 cup cold milk
Optional 1 tablespoon milk, for glazing the tops of the biscuits
Optional 1 tablespoon sugar, for sprinkling the tops of the biscuits


Directions
1. Preheat oven to very hot 475°F.

2. Mix dry ingredients into a large bowl.

3. Rub the frozen grated butter into the dry ingredients until it resembles very coarse bread crumbs with some pea-sized pieces if you want flaky scones or until it resembles coarse beach sand if you want tender scones.

4. Add the mashed banana and nearly all of the liquid into the rubbed-in flour/butter mixture and mix until it just forms a sticky dough (add the remaining liquid if needed). The wetter the dough the lighter the scones (biscuits) will be!

5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board, lightly flour the top of the dough. Gradually knead the blueberries into the layers as to not squish them, but evenly distribute through the dough. To achieve 
an even homogeneous crumb to your scones knead very gently about 4 or 5 times (do not press too firmly) the dough until it is smooth. To achieve a layered effect in your scones knead very gently once (do not press too firmly) then fold and turn the kneaded dough about 3 or 4 times until the dough has formed a smooth texture. (Use a floured plastic scraper to help you knead and/or fold and turn the dough if you wish.)

6. Pat or roll out the dough into a 6 inch by 4 inch circle by about ¾ inch thick. Using a well-floured sharp knife, form squares or wedges as you desire.

7. Place the rounds just touching on a 6 inch greased cast iron pan or baking dish if you wish to have soft-sided scones or place the rounds spaced widely apart on the baking dish if you wish to have crisp-sided scones. Glaze the tops with milk if you want a golden color on your scones or lightly flour if you want a more traditional look to your scones. Sprinkle the tops with sugar.

8. Bake in the preheated very hot oven for about 10 minutes (check at 8 minutes, just in case) until the scones are well risen and are lightly colored on the tops. The scones are ready when the sides are set.

9. Immediately place onto cooling rack to stop the cooking process, serve while still warm.

2 comments:

Linda said...

They look wonderful !! Will you make them for me this weekend?

February 2, 2012 at 8:56 PM
Alise Sjostrom said...

Absolutely!

February 3, 2012 at 8:22 AM

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