Biscuits and Gravy

Morgan Fry

Senior Member
Messages
447
Location
Leeds
I love to cook almost as much as I love to eat almost as much as I love to play, and I thought the like-minded here might enjoy an American recipe or two. And if there is any meal Americans do right, it's breakfast.

Biscuits and sausage gravy :shocked: is an integral part of any breakfast in the South. I know it sounds bizzare to you Brits, but fear not -- they're not biscuits, it isn't gravy, heck, for that matter it ain't even properly sausage. But it's because food like this is so good that Americans are so fat.

You've gotta make this in parts, but the biscuits and sausage can be made in advance. Only takes a good 1/2 hour to do it all in the morning, though.


American Breakfast Sausage


We only ever have sausage for breakfast in the States. It's served in small links or in patties. And this is the only kind of sausage there is:

  • 500g minced pork
  • 2 teaspoons sage
  • 1 tsp marjoram or oregano
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1 tsp chili flakes
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp brown sugar (or any other sugar, ftm)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

Mix it all together in a bowl. It'll keep for about a week in the fridge. To cook, shape it into patties and fry it up.

Buttermilk Biscuits

In the South, you don't have bread with meals, you have biscuits. It's essentially a scone with buttermilk substituted for cream. Since the buttermild adds leavening, they're much much lighter and fluffier than scones.

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour (sorry, don't know what that weighs)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 75g butter (UNsalted only)
  • ~250 ml buttermilk

Sift the dry ingredients together into a bowl.
Add the butter, and cut it up using a pastry blender, or a wire wisk or a fork, or your fingers. You want to break the buter down into pea-sized chunks (not big marrow-fat peas, little petit pois type peas).
Add buttermilk and mix together until the flour is absorbed.
Turn it out onto a well-floured surface (I use a granite cutting board from Asda, but the worktop will).
Knead it, adding flour as needed to keep the dough from getting sticky, until it is slightly elastic. The point of kneading for pastry (like this) is to fold the dough over, spread it out, repeat. You're not stretching it out like with bread, just making a lot of layers.
Roll or pat it out to about 1 cm witdh.
Cut in circles and place close together on a lightly greased baking sheet.
Put on the bottom shelf in a preheated 220°C oven for 10 minutes, or until tops are golden brown.
Best when served right away, but they'll keep for a few days and reheat fine. Good served with gravy or with honey on top.
Makes 6-8 biscuits.

Sausasge Gravy

In the South, cream gravy goes on everything. Grits? Gravy. Chicken fried steak? Gravy. Biscuits? Gravy. Eggs? Gravy. Add some sausage and it's even better.

  • 250g sausage (above)
  • 30g lard
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 325 ml milk
  • salt
  • black pepper

Crumble the sausage into a saucepan (not a non-stick pan, and if you have a cast-iron skillet use it instead). Cook it over medium-low heat. Get it good and brown, almost burnt, and let some stick to the bottom of the pan, again, not quite burned but well brown. Empty it out and set it aside.
Melt the lard in the saucepan and add the flour.
Whisk together the lard & flour, scraping sausage bits off the bottom of the pan. This is a roux, the basis of any proper gravy. The roux will swell as the flour grains absorb the fat. When it stops bubbling and swelling, it's done.
Add the milk, whisking the whole time.
Once the milk and roux are blended together, salt and pepper to taste. Should be very peppery.
Add the sausage and cook down over low heat until it's desired thickness (should be thick).
To serve: pour it on everything in sight.
Serves 2.

To serve the full Southern breakfast: Warm up 2 biscuits (hopefully they're still fresh out of the oven), split them open and absolutely smother them with gravy. Serve with a couple of fried eggs and bacon (In American bacon means smoked streaky bacon, no other), and coffee. You'd better be hungry because this'll stick to your ribs for a good while. Best hangover breakfast in the world, too.

Enjoy!
--Morgan
 

jonf

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,655
Location
Betelgeuse
!!!

Gordon Bennett, if I ate that on a regular basis for breakfast I'd be the size of an elephant.

Still, does sound like an excellent hangover cure.
 
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