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hot and flakey

Another recipe from our “carb-heavy” Bread and Sandwich class last week. This is my basic biscuit recipe that has been jazzed up in a very savory way with the addition of basil and Parmesan. To make regular flakey biscuits, just omit those two ingredients. It is important to not twist the biscuit cutter when cutting out your biscuits. When you do that, you’re sealing the outside edges and preventing them from becoming as flakey as they can be. And be sure to roll (or in this case, pat) them out on a surface that has been “floured” with powdered sugar instead of flour… that little subtle difference is what makes them extra special.

Parmesan-Basil Biscuits

2 cups flour
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/3 cup minced fresh basil
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
3/4 cup milk
Powdered sugar for “flouring” the cutting surface
Additional unsalted butter for brushing tops, melted

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with a Silpat mat or parchment paper.

Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl, whisk to combine.  Cut in butter with a pastry blender until butter pieces are about the size of small peas.  Stir in basil and cheese. Add milk to the flour mixture, and stir with a wooden spoon until just moistened.

Turn dough out onto a surface that is “floured” lightly with powdered sugar rather than flour.; pat dough into a 1-inch-thick circle.  Cut with a 2-inch biscuit cutter (do not twist) into about 15 biscuits. Place on the prepared baking sheet, brush tops with melted butter, and bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from oven and serve hot with softened butter for spreading inside or jalapeno jelly.

Makes about 15

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