Homemade Biscuits

I recently told my wife “This is the year of the biscuit”. I don’t know what got over me when I said that, but I meant what I said. I’ve been thinking of biscuits for some time now that I had to make some more attempts at trying to get the biscuit down. There are so many things you can do with a biscuit, and hence why I probably said that to my wife, everything from sweet and savory. What is not to love about that? Ever since I lived in Dallas, there was one thing that has never left my mind (besides the friendships I made) and that is the love of biscuits and gravy. That is probably another reason why I am making an attempt at creating some really good biscuits.

Homemade Biscuits Recipe
Homemade Biscuits Recipe

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp coarse salt
  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter, chilled but not frozen, cut into small pieces
  • 1 cup 1% milk
  • Ring cutter, cut to about 3/4 inch thick

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.

Start by mixing the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder into a mixing bowl. Once mixed gently add in the butter, and slowly begin pouring in the milk. You want to form a somewhat firm dough, but not too firm.

Gently roll the dough onto a lightly flour surface, about 3/4 of an inch thick. Use a glass, or if you have a kitchen ring mold, and press down into the dough to shape your biscuit. Continue with however many biscuits you can get away with. Mine yielded 5 biscuits.

Homemade Biscuits
Homemade Biscuits

Place in the preheated oven and bake for about 12 minutes. Remove onto a wired rack, or onto a serving plate, and dig in.

These were a perfect side dish to some homemade barbecue ribs, and with a bit of butter they were even better. Now I have to teach my kids how to make these as they would be great for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Hope you enjoy!

Ham and Peas Mac and Cheese

Mac and cheese has got to be a top ten comfort food. I’ve made all sorts of different kinds of mac and cheese in my lifetime, and granted that it is summer time here in Wisconsin that did not stop me from making another delicious batch of mac and cheese. This time it was ham and peas mac and cheese. Ham and peas are a perfect match, and as I was digging through my freezer to purge things that I have stored for the past couple of months, I decided it was the ham that was going to get purged. This ham and peas mac and cheese is not only a great pairing, but it ended up being one great one pot meal.

Ham and Peas Mac and Cheese Recipe
Ham and Peas Mac and Cheese Recipe

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 3 cups of cooked ham, chopped
  • 1 cup of onion, diced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1 tsp paprika powder
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 5 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 4 cups of milk
  • 1 tbsp Tabasco, optional
  • 3 cups of shredded cheddar cheese
  • 3 slices of American cheese, optional
  • 1 cup of frozen peas
  • 1 lb penne pasta, cooked until al dente

Start by adding the canola oil to a large pot, and cook on medium heat for a minute or so. Toss in the onion, garlic, salt, pepper, paprika, Tabasco, and cooked ham. Cook until the ham gets a bit crisp, and the onions cook through, about 7 minutes.

During that time, cook your pasta.

In a sauce pot, add the butter, and let it get melted on medium heat. Once melted, add the flour, and using a whisk or wooden spoon, cook the flour for a few minutes. Once the flour is a bit golden in color, this is when you want to add in your milk, continuing to stir, mixing in the roux and thickening it. Once the sauce thickens, add in the cheeses and let that melt, making the cheese sauce.

ham-peas-mac-cheese-ingredients

Drain the pasta, and add it to your ham mixture. Add in the cheese sauce, along with the frozen peas, and give it a great stir. Once everything is nicely incorporated, cover, and place into a preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes.

Remove and serve. The end result is nothing but pure comfort, and yes I did crumble goldfish on mine. That’s the type of mood I was in that day, and boy were they ever delicious.  Hope you enjoy!

Korean Style Cast Iron Potatoes

There’s one cuisine I wish I knew much more about and that is Korean. There are a couple of places in town but I have yet to visit. I’m familiar with some of the dishes, especially kimchi, as well as one of my favorite condiments lately, and that is gochujang. If you have never had gochujang, go out and by a small container of it, and I guarantee you will love it. It’s a funky fermented paste that is so addictive. Mixed in mayonnaise makes you wonder where it has been all of your life. I’m trying to get my wife and kids to enjoy it as much as I do, and this was another attempt. I know they all love crispy potatoes, so I decided to serve these Korean style cast iron potatoes with some grilled meat and see if I could persuade them to love it as much as I do.

Korean Style Cast Iron Potatoes
Korean Style Cast Iron Potatoes

These potatoes are way too easy to make and are packed with awesome flavor, plus they are great for leftovers if you are looking for some great crispy hash of sorts.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 3 yukon gold potatoes, quartered, and chopped into large chunks
  • 2 tbsp gochujang paste
  • 2 tbsp water
  • salt to taste
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • cilantro to garnish, optional

Start by parboiling your potatoes, and boil them just until they become fork tender, but not mushy. Once tender, strain the potatoes.

During this time, take the gochujang paste and water, and stir to make a smooth mixture.

Heat a skillet on medium-high heat. Add in the oil, give it a good swirl in the pan. Next add in the potatoes, and cook until they get nice and crispy on the exterior, stirring along the way. Add in the gochujang mixture, and give a good toss. Cook for about 2-3 minutes or until the gochujang has been warmed through and coats all of the potatoes.

Shower the potatoes with cilantro, and taste. If you want some salt, which I think potatoes always needs, add it.

Serve immediately. The end result is a great smokey, funky, addictive taste that had me coming back for more. Did my wife and kids love them? That is debatable, but at least they tried. I’ll get them to love this stuff one day, I guarantee it! Hope you enjoy!

Skillet Fried Chickpeas with Garlic and Herbs

One of the things I truly love is snacking. I could snack all day long, however I find that my snacking time is really only after work. My go to snacks are pretty much cheese, hummus, or kettle style chips. As the cheese and chips are not all that great for me, I decided to turn things up a bit and make some simple skillet fried chickpeas, or garbanzo beans.  Chickpeas after all are what I use to make hummus, and as I have roasted them in the oven in the past I wanted to do something a bit different with them this time. This is where a bit of oil, cloves of garlic, and a can of chickpeas came into play.

Skillet Fried Chickpeas with Garlic and Herbs
Skillet Fried Chickpeas with Garlic and Herbs

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 12 oz can of chickpeas, drained, rinsed, and lightly patted to dry
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 5 cloves of garlic, skin removed, lightly smashed
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • salt to taste

Start by heating a skillet on medium-low heat. Add in the oil and let it come to temperature, a couple of minutes.

Skillet Fried Chickpeas with Garlic and Herbs
Skillet Fried Chickpeas with Garlic and Herbs

Next add in the chickpeas and garlic, and give this a good toss. Continue to cook, and toss at this temperature for about 20 minutes, or until they become nice and crispy. Once crispy, season with salt and thyme, giving them another good toss.

Serve immediately. The result is a great crispy exterior, with a creamy interior along with great garlic notes (feel free to eat the garlic), and a salty thyme flavor that have you going back for more. This is truly a great after work snack, and one that is good for you to boot! Hope you enjoy.