Biscuits with Bourbon-Blueberry Quick Jam from the 'The Minimalist Kitchen' Cookbook

Biscuits with Bourbon-Blueberry Quick Jam from the 'The Minimalist Kitchen' Cookbook

I wanted to share this biscuit recipe with you because they are so versatile and easy to make. You can enjoy them for breakfast with this delicious blueberry jam, or with an egg and some cheese, depending on whether you prefer sweet or savory.

Everything Biscuits with Asiago

The sweet summer air has finally started to warm. I am now able to open my windows, the sun shining bright, while the wind gently tousles my hair. Warm summer days, evening sun, margaritas on the patio is what I enjoy most. Summer reminds me of childhood. Immersed in imaginary land, time passing by without any cares. Orange creamsicles, pogo sticks, and double-dutch used to be high on my priority list. Some days I feel as though nothing has changed. Early last week, I picked up an assortment of bagels. Since then, I awake each morning, my stomach grumbling in anticipation of whats to come. As I stumble to the kitchen, my eyes still half asleep, I stick my hand into the brown paper bag, fish around, and hope that I'll either pull out an everything or cheese bagel. Soon after, I start to wonder. Wondering if it's at all possible to take my two favorite bagels (cheese & everything) and transform them into a soft savory melt-in-your-mouth biscuit, which honestly seems like far less work than making my own bagels. Intrigued by this possibility, I start experimenting.

  Most importantly, the cheese. I went with an asiago, for it's sharp strong flavor. I love the taste of asiago cheese bread, and was hoping to create a similar flavor. I went on a search, high and low, to find dehydrated onions and garlic for my topping. With no luck, I choose to leave them off, being too lazy to make my own. I used sesame and poppy seeds, and of course, some crunchy sea salt. The sour cream offered a rich creaminess. The biscuits turned out heavenly. Bite size, flaky, soft, tender. The fat from the butter and cheese helped separate the layers of dough creating a flaky rich mouth feel. The seeds and salt added an additional crunch which was completely necessary. My only issue is that I can't stop eating them - sigh.

makes 12 biscuits

2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
8 tbsp unsalted butter, frozen and cubed
1/2 cup sour cream
1 large egg
1 cup asiago cheese, shredded
1 tsp sesame seeds
1 tsp poppy seeds
1/4 tsp coarse sea salt
1 egg white

Preheat oven to 400ºF.

In a food processor, pulse the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and black pepper until combined.

Cut the frozen butter into tiny cubes. Add it to the food processor and pulse until the butter has crumbled into pea size pieces, 10 - 20 seconds.

In a small bowl, whisk the sour cream and egg. Add it to the flour and butter, and pulse until the dough starts to stick together. Add the shredded cheese and pulse a few more times.

On a floured work surface, knead the dough until it starts to come together. If the dough seems too dry, do not add any water, the dough will eventually start to stick together. Roll out the dough into a 1 inch thick sheet. With a small circular cookie cutter, cut out the biscuit shapes. Knead the extra dough into a ball, and roll it out again into a 1 inch sheet. Continue in this manner until you have used it all up.

Place the biscuits onto a baking sheet 1 1/2 inches apart.

In a small bowl, combine the sesame seeds, poppy seeds, and sea salt. In another small bowl, whisk 1 egg white.

Brush the top of the biscuits with the egg white, and then sprinkle the seed mixture on top.

Bake in the oven for 15 minutes or until the biscuits start to turn light brown on top. Remove from the oven and serve warm.

Strawberry Shortcakes

Yesterday, I got bored. I often get bored. I blame this on; a) constant need for change, b) constant need for stimulation, and c) short attention span. What to do? Eat chocolate? No wait, I just ate chocolate. Do yoga? One problem, today I'm lacking gusto. No....... yes....... no....... yes...... no........ YES. Self-control = 0 vs Self-indulgence = 1 Shopping will be fun, but what shall I buy?  A puppy? No, bad idea. Ody (my dog) + _____ (new dog) = poop x 2 - no thanks. A xylophone? Wait, do I really want a xylophone or do I just really like saying xylophone? What about a banana-phone? Also, cool name, but no, I don't think I need a banana-phone.  A cookbook?  Do I really need a cookbook? This is questionable. Do I really want a cookbook? Definitely. This dilemma, the whole need vs want thing, seems to be a reoccurrence in my life. I've determined that my desire to want is way stronger than my actual need.

So now that we've determined I want a new cookbook, how does one decide? There is so much to think about; baking vs frying, italian vs japanese, Jamie Oliver vs Gordon Ramsay.

Undoubtedly, I picked the big, pretty one, with lots of pictures and BAKING in large letters on the cover. That's how you lure in the girl with a constant need for stimulation and low attention span.

Baking by James Peterson, this is the winner. It's fun and pretty and I like it.

makes 8
inspired by Baking by James Peterson

2 cups flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup of cold butter
1 egg
3/4 cup buttermilk
2 pints strawberries
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 375 F.

2. In a food processor, pulse flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Finely chop the cold butter into 1/4 inch slices. Add the butter to the flour mixture, and pulse until it has turned into pea size pieces.

3. In a separate bowl, mix the egg and butter milk. In a large bowl, combine the flour with the buttermilk mixture. Don't over mix. Plop the dough onto a well floured work surface, and knead until it sticks together. Don't over knead. You want the dough to be manageable. Separate the dough into 8 balls. Flatten the balls into disk shapes, and place on a parchment covered baking sheet. Brush the top and bottom of the dough disks with buttermilk.

4. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes or until light brown.

5. While the biscuit are baking, prepare the chantilly creme. Pour 1 cup of whipping cream, 1 tbsp sugar, and 1 tsp vanilla in a bowl and place in the refrigerator (including the mixing beaters), for 5 minutes. You want the whole kit and caboodle to stay cold.

6. Remove from fridge and beat with an electric hand mixer on low speed.  Once the cream starts to thicken, turn up the speed to medium. Once the cream starts to form soft peaks, stop. This is the your desired consistency.

7. Once the biscuits are done, slice them in half. Line the bottom with strawberry slices, and top with a few dollops of whipped cream.