Soup and salad without bread just doesn’t sound right.
So, I caved. Since I was deep into perusing Lee Bailey’s “Soup Meals,” it didn’t take long to stumble upon his recipe for Mozzarella Biscuits. Since I didn’t have any mozzarella on hand, it didn’t take long to adapt the recipe to what I did have in my fridge. Here is the delicious result:
CHEESE-Y AND PEPPER-Y DROP BISCUITS (Adapted from Lee Bailey’s “Soup Meals”)
2 cups all-purpose, unbleached flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon ground cayenne (or more to taste)
6 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cubed
1 ½ cups buttermilk
1 cup grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese
Preheat oven to 450-degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Sift the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, black pepper and cayenne into a medium bowl. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or, better yet, your fingers until butter is incorporated and is the size of small peas. Add buttermilk and stir to make a thick dough. Stir in cheese. The dough should be thick enough so that it will just drop from a spoon with a little nudge (Lee’s words, not mine. Gotta love that).
Drop onto the baking sheet by the tablespoonful and bake for 15 to 18 minutes until golden. Remove to a baking rack to cool slightly before serving.
Yield: 20 – 40 biscuits, depending upon how big you make them
* As usual, I used an ice cream scoop to drop these onto the baking sheet. (Alright, I will admit to having a ridiculous assortment of the things). For this recipe, I used the 1 1/2-inch scoop. Worked like a charm!
Oy veh. What's wrong with me that I have this many scoops, anyway?
* These are cheesy, savory little morsels that are crunchy on the bottom and absolutely addictive. My no-carb scruples were totally thrown out the window once these biscuits came out of the oven. Damn!
* In fact, they are so good, they don't even need butter. Can't believe I said that.
* Lee says you can bake, then store these for a couple of days. To reheat, place them directly on the oven rack so the bottoms stay crispy. If it works for Lee, it works for me!
* As I was about to close the book, I noticed Lee's recipe for Pecan Snickerdoodles with Mandarin Oranges. What????? Guess that's showing up soon on my recipe agenda......