I know, I know, biscuits and gravy are not healthy. For the most part, our family tries to eat healthy, but sometimes it’s fun to eat a little bit o’ comfort food. Whenever I find a new recipe (especially one that is not healthy), I try to tweak it a little here and there. A few months ago, I found this recipe for Southern buttermilk biscuits. Buttermilk is not something we usually keep on hand so I used a recipe I had previously found for buttermilk online using either vinegar or lemon juice mixed with milk. That night, I used a lemon that I had on hand. While squeezing the lemon, a seed fell into my mixture unnoticed. While I was pouring the buttermilk mixture into the dry mix, I noticed the lemon seed fall in. The kids were sitting at the bar area helping me make the biscuits and they laughed at me. I told them I was going to leave it in the mix.; they thought I was joking. When we sat down to eat dinner, I told them whoever found the biscuit with the lemon seed in it would get the prize. Caleb won the prize that night.
So here we are, a few months later, and I am in the need for some comfort food. The kids asked me what I was making for dinner. They were so excited when they found out. Immediately, my five-year-old, Andrew, said, “Yeah! Are you going to put another lemon seed in?” How could I say no to that? It’s amazing what their little minds remember. So for tonight’s dinner we will be serving a side of assorted fresh vegetables with hummus (which will need to be eaten before the biscuits), a watermelon and biscuits and gravy with a lemon seed…. Want to come over for dinner? Maybe you’ll be the one to find the seed. You can also serve the biscuits with honey or strawberry jam (I have a great homemade recipe for healthy strawberry freezer jam that I will share in a later post).
I did not have a lemon tonight so I searched my pantry for something else I could add and found a craisen. Andrew found the secret craisen, so he got the reward. I tried to tell him his reward was to take out the trash or eat an extra piece of broccoli, but he didn’t think that was funny. Use a reward of your choice. Andrew ended up getting a small piece of chocolate which he ended up sharing with his siblings. Isn’t he sweet?
I tried to think of a way that I could use this as a biblical illustration for the kids, but I couldn’t. Any ideas? If so, please add it to the comments section. I would love to use it with your permission.
Since I know you are dying to know ;), I have included the recipe. I hope you enjoy it! The original biscuit recipe is found here at Southern.food.com. The following recipe below is my adapted HEALTHIER 🙂 version:
BISCUIT Ingredients (makes about 10 biscuits):
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup white whole-wheat flour (feel free to use all white whole-wheat )
1 tbsp. baking powder (make sure to use the aluminum-free kind)
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt (if using unsalted butter, you may consider upping this to 1 tsp)
6 tbsp. salted butter, cold
1 cup buttermilk (1 scant cup rice milk and 1 tbsp. vinegar or lemon juice: Adapted from the original recipe here.
1 lemon seed (optional)- I would recommend adding a craisen or the like if you have small children as a lemon seed can be a chokeable. (HINT for moms: Try to remember which biscuit you put it in so you or your husband don’t get it; cause that kinda ruins the fun. :/ If it happens, try to inconspicuously give the biscuit to one of your kids. This may or may not have happened to us tonight).
Preheat your oven to 450°F.
Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl.
Cut the butter into chunks and cut into the flour until it resembles course meal.
- Add the buttermilk and mix JUST until combined. Add a little more buttermilk if it looks dry.
- Turn the dough out onto a floured surface.
- Gently pat (do NOT roll with a rolling pin) the dough out until it’s about 1/2″ thick. Fold the dough about 5 times, gently press the dough down to 1 inch thick.
- Use a round cutter to cut them into rounds and gently use the dough scraps to make a few more. (Or use your hands like I do to mold them into round shapes if you don’t have a cutter).
- Place the biscuits on a cookie sheet- if you like soft sides, have them touch each other.
- Bake for about 10-12 minutes- the biscuits will be a beautiful light golden brown on top and bottom. Do not over bake them.
Note: The key to soft biscuits is not in the ingredients, but in the handling of the dough. The key is to handle the dough as little as possible or you will have tough biscuits. You can also make these biscuits, cut them, place them on the cookie sheet and freeze them for up to a month. When they are frozen, take them off the cookie sheet and store in a freezer tight container. When you want biscuits, simply place them frozen on the cookie sheet and bake at 450°F for about 20 minutes.
And here is the adapted gravy recipe. The original recipe is found here.
GRAVY ingredients (it says it makes 8 servings but I have to double the batch for the six of us):
1 roll of prosage (we are vegetarian) or 1 lb of meat of your choice
1/3 cup white whole-wheat flour
3-4 cups rice milk (or milk of your choice)
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp pepper or to taste
- Cook the meat in a little bit of oil until browned over medium heat in a skillet.
- Add the flour and cook until dissolved, about 1 minute.
- Stir in the milk. Cook, whisking frequently, until the gravy is very thick and bubbly (you can add more milk later if you need to thin).
- Season generously with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
- Serve with hot biscuits.
There you have it! Please visit the website listed above for the biscuits if you would like the nutritional facts, or don’t, if you want to enjoy whole-heartedly what you are eating.