Sunday, October 22, 2006

Sweet potato biscuits

Sunday, October 22, 2006
I bought a set of graduated biscuit cutters yesterday. This is the first time I've had an actual biscuit cutter--I've always used a glass or a cup or whatever I have on hand. I'm so happy that I broke down and bought the biscuit cutters, though--their sharp steel sides cut right into the dough so you don't have to twist and turn. I was burbling about how thrilled I was to have actual biscuit cutters at Williams-Sonoma, and the woman who was waiting on me didn't look at me like I was insane. She looked pleased. That is why I like kitchen stores. In fact, I remember being at Williams-Sonoma the day after Julia Child died. At work, I'd been talking about how sad I was and that if I had to name a true hero of mine, it would be Julia Child. The youngsters didn't quite get it. But at Williams-Sonoma, everyone was talking about Julia Child and their sadness at her death.
Anyway, mostly I have made it a point to try to follow these recipes as closely as possible because I feel that one should not go off on a frolic and detour while learning to bake bread. ("Frolic and detour" is actually a legal term of art--about the only one that's fun to say). However, because I am planning to serve these biscuits at a party tomorrow night, and I wanted to be able to taste them myself, I one-and-a-halfed the recipe. Also, because I plan to serve miniature ham-and-biscuit sandwiches tomorrow, I used the tiniest biscuit cutter instead of the standard size.
These are fine, fine biscuits. Like the Angel Light biscuits that I made this summer, these have yeast in them, making them tall and extremely light. I had one plain, one with butter, one with chicken, and one with jam. I would be hard-pressed to say which one was better, and I haven't even tried the ones with ham and honey mustard that I'm serving tomorrow, per Rose's suggestion.
I was sorry that I hadn't brought some White Lily self-rising flour back home with me from North Carolina. I used self-rising flour, but it was General Mills, not White Lily, and it just doesn't have that same deep South cachet.
Now I'm done with the breads that don't require a mixer, and still no word on when my KitchenAid will be done. I've also been asked to bring bread to a potluck dinner on Tuesday, but I may have to (gasp) buy some.


evil cake lady said...

gasp indeed! maybe this is the perfect opportunity to figure out how to knead dough by hand??
(what am I saying, I cheated and made brownies from a box this weekend...)
your biscuits look amazing, by the way :)

Chubbypanda said...

Mmmm... Biscuits. Where the trick is knowing how little to knead instead of how much. Those look like they'd be amazing with ham, honey mustard, and a bit of Swiss cheese.

I prefer to "sift" my own self-rising flour together in the food processor. That way I can control everything from gluten content to levening.

- Chubbypanda

breadbasketcase said...

That comment would have been quite cruel if you hadn't added the brownie mix part. Yes, you're right--I may have to do it the old-fashioned way.

evil cake lady said...

oh BBC,
I didn't mean to be cruel, sorry. I am quite attached to my kitchenaid as well--but in the, oh, three whole times that I've baked bread I kneaded by hand and it was very fun and satisfying. I thought you might like it too. I hope your mixer gets fixed soon.

Rokzane said...

Maybe someone you know has a mixer you could borrow?

Incidently, I bought a 6qt kitchenAid back in 2002. One year later it broke. I haven't gotten it fixed yet. The repair shop estimated it would cost about 200 hundred to get it fixed (the gear shaft broke). Yikes. I went on eBay and bought a 1982 KitchenAid model that is Hobart made, used of course, but it is the sturdiest mixer I've ever owned. When Hobart was manufacturing them, they were the best mixers on the market. I got the Hobart mixer for far less than repairing the other one would have cost me.

Also, I do believe you can get White Lily flour at Williams-Sonoma now.

breadbasketcase said...

You are a regular fount of information. Or is it font of information? I will search out the White Lily flour next time I'm at Williams-Sonoma.

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