Wednesday, January 15, 2014

winter & black pepper buttermilk biscuits.

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January 12th.

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It seems to me that winter gives you the space to be melancholy. More than any other season. Maybe it's all the darkness, these short days. The sadness moves in and sits under the surface, underneath those bare branches. I think it also brings a certain kind of mindfulness. It's easy to find beauty in other seasons. Winter forces you to pay attention. To look for good things. Firewood, all piled up. Smoke scented air. Walks in the chill. These two - the sadness and the mindfulness, they seem to temper each other.

It's a season of baking, too. That pull to be in the kitchen, the warmest part of the house. It has me baking a lot of biscuits. Biscuit making is all about technique. Grating your butter is the easiest way to make sure it stays cold. I like it a lot better than cutting it in with a knife and fork. I've learned to knead the dough a few more times that I think I should - I was scared of tough biscuits, but you need to work the gluten a bit so they hold together well, and the folding gives you the layers everyone wants in a biscuit. Be sure to bake until your tops are well golden. Eat em' warm, and enjoy some of that winter beauty.

Black Pepper Buttermilk Biscuits
makes 12

3 cups all purpose flour, (white lily if you can get it.)
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup cold salted butter
1 1/4 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 400.

Grate butter into a small bowl with large side of a cheese grater. Stick in the freezer.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and pepper.

Add in butter and cut it in with a fork. Pour in buttermilk and stir until dough comes together in a shaggy dough. Knead a 5-7 times in the bowl, then turn out on a floured work surface. Pat dough down to 1/4 inch thick, then fold over and pat down again. Fold over once again, then cut out rounds using a biscuit cutter or floured glass.

Place biscuits side by side in a cast iron skillet. Top with more black pepper. Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until golden brown.

83 comments:

  1. Wonderfully put, and such a good way to look at the moodiness of January and February. I will have to keep that in mind as we slog forward in these dark days ;) these biscuits look absolutely phenomenal. Making me hungry! Thank you so much for sharing!

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  2. Your thoughtful words about winter ring so true to me. Even your pictures express the melancholy I feel. But the idea of making biscuits in my kitchen on a cold day warms my heart. Thank you so much for the recipe!

    XO,
    Jane

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  3. Hi,Hannah. I am an editor of ARTY magazine. I have sent you a email to your ymail. I am trying to contact you in several ways. Looking forward. Thx.

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  4. I love baking. It makes the house so cozy. These biscuits look amazing!

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  5. Lovely pictures and tempting biscuits! I love winter. It is such a beautriful season...

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  6. Lovely Hannah, your photos and words really capture the beauty of winter. And I love the idea of these biscuits; I'm a fiend for black pepper.

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  7. Love black pepper in biscuits. Gives them extra depth of flavor or something. Your blog is gorgeous and the biscuits look wonderful!

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  8. With our long New England winters and short winter days, I know exactly what you mean. And like no other time of year, I'm drawn to be in the kitchen, preferably with a pot simmering on the stove all day and something baking in the oven. I'll have to give your biscuits a try soon (especially since my husband is all about black pepper),

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  9. These biscuits sound so simple and delicious. Black pepper sounds like a great way to punch them up, while still keeping them basic enough to go with practically anything on the menu. :)

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  10. perfect with country gravy, perhaps?

    hmmm...may have to give that a whirl this weekend...

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  11. Absolutely wonderful pictures and the biscuits look delicious!

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  12. Beautifully said...I couldn't agree more. Happy Nesting.

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  14. I love your sentiments on winter here. Baking brings that cozy warmth our soul misses during the season. These biscuits sound delicious!

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  15. Looks absolutely delicious - love the jam and hint of yummy fried eggs in the background too. And it makes me feel all warm and cosy inside just looking at those beautiful photos of the wood. I must say my favourite is the one with that gorgeous nail colour! Very cheering in the melancholy of winter, what a lovely, chic colour - bit like the jam (or do you call it jelly?)!

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  16. I really love the photography that went along with this post, plus biscuits, how could that not be good!

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  18. Your photography is absolutely gorgeous! I've started a blog - http://bourbonandbrownsugar.wordpress.com/ - I am having so much fun writing it, but I'm still learning about the photography :) And I can't wait to try these biscuits... they look fantastic... thanks!

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  20. This recipe is just perfect for this season. And I have to agree with you, the kitchen will be the part of the house that will keep us warm. It's the place where I hang out more often on winter season.

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  29. Totally. The warmth in the kitchen in these cold days and of course the aroma baking these lovelies. They look amazing and im sure they taste amazing. Thx, preethi

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  30. These biscuits look fantastic! Gorgeous photos, as always!

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  31. Yum! I completely agree the want to be in the kitchen during cold weather. I love leaving the oven door open to cool after baking. It' helps make the house a little more cozy!

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  33. Great post! A bright spot on a cold winter's day.

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  34. I have never tried pepper biscuits and will try this recipe next Saturday after I pick up some jam. I really like your picture of the cut trees with the sun just starting to shine through the brush.

    Now, with that pic of the long row of wood, you have me shopping for a pot belly wood stove like my great grand mother had.

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  40. Oh my goodness your blog is just soooo pretty! :) The white pepper biscuits sound delicious. You probably won't see this, but I'll ask anyway...what kind of jam is that in the picture? I can't imagine what would pair well with white pepper.

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    1. Hi June! It's strawberry jam - strawberry pairs so well with pepper!

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  41. Nice scenery backed sunny weather. the more days your website more informative I read your article very inspired ciri-ciri kemasan crystal x asli Here we have a solution on how you take care of an important organ in the female body. Detailed information you can visit cara pemakaian crystal x

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  42. These were delicious! I was telling my sister over the phone that they were good, and my husband added, "Really good!" The cornmeal, sugar and salt make for a great texture and varying flavors.
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  43. Omg, I love biscuits (we call them baking powder biscuits here in Canada) and these were so awesome we kind of fought over who already had eaten their fair share and who got to have another one. They'll taste even better if possible on those cold winter nights which unfortunately are coming soon.

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