Saturday, March 29, 2008

Baking, Baking and More Baking

As if the list of goodies I’ve accumulated, patiently waiting to be baked, wasn’t long enough, I’ve just made sure that I wouldn’t run out of things to bake for at least a few years. For months I’ve been reading about one successful recipe after another, taken from this book.

I couldn’t wait any longer, Baking From My Home To Yours by Dorie Greenspan had to be mine. Not being able to find it in any book store was very frustrating, but, Amazon came to the rescue and a few days later I had THE book! And another one, but I’ll keep that as a surprise for later (tease, tease, tease). I was so happy to be able to join my first baking group, Tuesdays With Dorie, started by Laurie of Quirky Cupcake. Yes, I have jumped on the bandwagon and will be baking at least two recipes a month from the wonderful collection of sweet treats that is Baking. I couldn’t just let it gather dust on a bookshelf now could I? Of course, I also couldn’t wait a whole week without baking my first recipe from Baking so I looked through the Tuesdays with Dorie archives and chose a recipe that had already been baked by that fun gang.

I decided to make Pecan Sour Cream Biscuits and boy, I didn’t regret my choice. I even worked dinner around them as I didn’t want to bake them the next morning. So we had breakfast for dinner! I do that once in a while when I don’t feel like making what’s on the menu for that day. No one complained! I baked the biscuits the same way I bake my scones: pat the dough down in a circle on a round baking sheet (a pizza pan) covered with parchment paper then score the dough into 12 wedges.

I like my biscuits and scones with soft sides so I find this is the best way to bake them and it doesn’t overwork the dough. I ate way too many of these the next morning for breakfast, so I’m going to say a few seconds in the microwave and they’re good as new the next day! Really, I can’t say enough good things about these biscuits, you have to try them for yourself.

I am so happy about this purchase and about joining Tuesdays with Dorie, hopefully it’ll get me organized to bake once a week. Stay tuned for some tasty Tuesdays!

Pecan Sour Cream Biscuits
Baking From My Home To Yours by Dorie Greenspan
(Makes about 12 biscuits)

2 cups all-purpose flour (or 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour and 1/3 cup cake flour)
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup (packed) light brown sugar
5 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 10 pieces
1/2 cup cold sour cream *(I used no fat yogurt, I had no sour cream)
1/4 cup cold whole milk
1/3 cup finely chopped pecans, preferably toasted

Getting Ready: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Get out a sharp 2-inch-diameter biscuit cutter and line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat.

Whisk the flour(s), baking powder, salt, and baking soda together in a bowl. Stir in the brown sugar, making certain there are no lumps. Drop in the butter and, using your fingers, toss to coat the pieces of butter with flour. Quickly, working with your fingertips (my favorite method) or a pastry blender, cut and rub the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture is pebbly. You’ll have pea-size pieces, pieces the size of oatmeal flakes and pieces the size of everything in between– and that’s just right.

Stir the sour cream and milk together and pour over the dry ingredients. Grab a fork and gently toss and turn the ingredients together until you’ve got a nice soft dough. Now reach into the bowl with your hands and give the dough a quick gentle kneading– 3 or 4 turns should be just enough to bring everything together. Toss in the pecans and knead 2 to 3 times to incorporate them.

Lightly dust a work surface with flour and turn out the dough. Dust the top of the dough very lightly with flour, pat the dough out with your hands or toll it with a pin until it is about 1/2 inch high. Don’t worry if the dough isn’t completely even– a quick, light touch is more important than accuracy.

Use the biscuit cutter to cut out as many biscuits as you can. Try to cut the biscuits close to one another so you get the most you can out of the first round. By hand or with a small spatula, transfer the biscuits to the baking sheet. Gather together the scraps, working with them as little as possible, pat out to a 1/2-inch thickness and cut as many additional biscuits as you can; transfer these to the sheet. (The biscuits can be made to this point and frozen on the baking sheet, then wrapped airtight and kept for up to 2 months. Bake without defrosting– just add a couple more minutes to the oven time.)

Bake the biscuits for 14-18 minutes, or until they are tall, puffed and golden brown. Transfer them to a serving basket.

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RecipeGirl said...

I've been baking a few Dorie things too and all have turned out FAB. I'm too afraid to join the TWD group because I don't want to HAVE to bake too many goodies. Bad for the waistline, you know! These look droolworthy!

Ginny said...

Delicious! I love that book and check it out of the library so frequently that I really should invest! I'm excited you are joining the group...more bake goods to look forward too! :)

Anonymous said...

Welcome to the group! I just joined, and even though my calorie count has shot up, I think it's worth it.

Nic said...

Your biscuits look great, gorgeous colour and beautiful texture inside.
I LOVE Dorie's book - haven't joined that group myself because there's not enough time every week. I'm sure going to look forward to your delicious posts each Tuesday!

biscuitpusher said...

A great book and worth every penny. One of my all-time favorite recipes from that book is the Pecan Sticky Rolls. They take two days and are a sticky mess, but oh so incredibly good.

grace said...

there's not a thing wrong with having breakfast for dinner, especially if it comes in the form of those biscuits! if i had my way, i'd probably have breakfast for breakfast, lunch, afternoon snack, and dinner. :)

test it comm said...

Those biscuits look good!

Vintage Tracy said...

Thanks for posting about a baking book. I have a few, sort of like a few, but otherwise really need some advice on which ones are worth it. I think I'll pick this up!! Do review more!

Vintage Tracy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Deanna said...

Can you give a beginner food blogger and photographer some hints on how to take clear, colorful photos of food? Your photos are great!

Alfie said...

These look so delicious - just like you could reach right in and take one!

LyB said...

Recipegirl - I just couldn't help myself, to heck with the waistline!;)

Ginny - You really should get the book for yourself, so much fun to splurge a little!

Kimberleyblue - Oh, it's definitely worth it! :)

Nic - I know, like I didn't have enough to do, but as I said I couldn't help myself! All the recipes look pretty strait forward, I should be able to handle it! :)

Biscuitpusher - I love sticky rolls, they're on my list of things to try.

A.Grace - LOL! Me too, I love scones, biscuits, muffins, any kind of breakfast food that can also masquerade as a snack!

Kevin - Thank you!

Pumpkin Girl - I should tell you all about another recent purchase in a few days or so, stay tuned!

Marzipanmom - First off, if you haven't already done so, join Flickr, it's a great way to learn the basics if you join a few groups. Also you really need a source of natural light to take clear pictures. And, practice, a lot! I'm no expert, but that's what I do!

Alfie - Thank you!

Cookie baker Lynn said...

Mmm, your biscuits look meltingly delicious.

LyB said...

Lynn - Thank you! These are so good, of course I love pecans so they were just perfect for me!