May 15, 2013

Biscuits on the rise

Diners can’t seem to get enough of these humble yet dreamy treats. Bakers debate the fine points.

By BETTY HALLOCK cClatchy Newspapers

(Continued from page 2)

BISCUITS IN RESTAURANTS
click image to enlarge

Biscuits are served with gravy and a poached egg at Squirl Cafe in Los Angeles.

McClatchy Newspapers

BISCUITS IN RESTAURANTS
click image to enlarge

Chef Govind Armstrong, above, makes biscuits at his restaurant Willie Jane in Venice, Calif.

McClatchy Newspapers

2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Cube or grate the cold butter on top of the dry ingredients, and then cut it in using a pastry cutter or fork. Stir in the buttermilk, and gently work the mixture until combined to form the dough.

3. On a floured surface, flatten and fold the dough onto itself three times. Flatten the dough out to a thickness of approximately one-half inch. Using a 3-inch round cutter, cut the dough and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush the tops with cream or melted butter, and sprinkle a pinch of natural sugar over each.

4. Bake the biscuits until puffed and golden, 15 to 20 minutes, rotating the tray halfway for even baking and coloring. Serve the biscuits warm.

BURNT ORANGE HONEY BUTTER:

1 orange, peeled and halved

1 cup orange juice

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened

¼ cup lavender honey

1. Place a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Place the orange halves, cut-side down, in the pan and cook, turning once, until they have developed a deep caramelized color, about 10 minutes. Add the juice, stirring to lift any flavoring from the bottom of the pan. Cook until the juice is reduced to a syrup, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and press the juice and orange halves through a fine mesh strainer, then cool the syrup to room temperature.

2. Place the butter in a food processor and, with the motor running, drizzle in the honey and syrup to combine (the butter, honey and syrup can also be whisked together in a large bowl). Serve alongside the warm biscuits. This makes about 1¾ cups butter.

Adapted from Govind Armstrong of Willie Jane. Lavender honey is available at select gourmet markets.

 

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