I hate biscuits and gravy. I cringe and look away when a dining companion orders them for breakfast. (you know who you are, Mark) That being said, I woke up yesterday wanting biscuits and gravy. Maybe it was the leftover buttermilk in the fridge, or the unopened package of country sausage. Maybe it was knowing that, if I didn't like the biscuits with gravy, there would be plenty left for enjoying with butter and orange blossom honey.
To my surprise I loved the biscuits and gravy. The biscuits were delightfully tangy, light and fluffy. Recipe adapted from Food.com's Southern Buttermilk Biscuits,
- For the biscuits:
- 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (plus more for dusting the board)
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon baking powder (use one without aluminum)
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter (very cold, diced)
- 1 cup buttermilk
- For the gravy:
- 1 small shallot
- 2 TBS butter
- 1 TBS canola oil
- 3 sausage links without casings or bulk breakfast sausage
- 1 TBS flour
- ½ cup heavy cream plus ½ cup whole milk or 1 cup half and half
- Freshly ground pepper to taste
- 1 TBS snipped fresh chives
- Salt to taste
- Preheat your oven to 450°F.
- Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl, or in the bowl of a food processor.
- Dice the cold butter into chunks and cut into the flour until it resembles small peas
- If using a food processor, just pulse a few times until achieving this consistency.
- Add the buttermilk and mix JUST until combined.
- If it seems on the dry side, add a bit more buttermilk. It should be very wet.
- Turn the dough out onto a floured board.
- Gently pat the dough out until it's about ½" thick. Fold the dough about 5 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.
- 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.
- Bake for about 10-12 minutes. The biscuits will be a beautiful light golden brown on top and bottom. Do not overbake.
- For the gravy:
- Finely dice one large shallot.
- Heat 2 TBS butter and 1 TBS canola oil in a heavy skillet. Saute the shallot until translucent. Break the sausage into small chucks and add to the skillet. Cook the sausage, crumbling it with a fork as it cooks. Add the flour to the skillet when the sausage is cooked and stir for one minute one medium heat. Do not allow the flour to brown. This is a white gravy and you want a light roux.
- Very slowly add the milk/cream or half and half, whisking constantly. Stop after a quarter cup and whisk until smooth. Keep adding the liquid and stirring to keep the gravy smooth. If it is thicker than you like, add more milk. Only add salt after tasting the gravy. It will get a lot of salt from the sausage. Add the chive just before serving.
- Serve over a hot, buttered buttermilk biscuit.