Monday, June 20, 2011

Cinnamon Biscuits

While I made these over the weekend, I wanted to hold off on blogging the recipe until I knew how they were the next day.  If you live alone, or your housemate(s) aren't voracious eaters, there will be leftovers and I thought it important to taste-test them at all stages.

Happy to report, they're awesome fresh out of the oven and they're also good at room temperature the next day without anything extra on them.  I left off the frosting idea, because I had a hunch they'd be sweet enough on their own, and I was right.  I plan on using the same biscuit recipe for something savory at a later date, because it was pretty awesome on its own.  Here you are:

Whisk together in a large bowl:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder

Add 6 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces.

Cut the butter into the flour until it's the size of small peas (pastry blender for the win!), and add:

3/4 cup half and half  (note, I didn't have half & half, I used 1/2 cup milk and 1/4 cup whipping cream)

Stir the moo juice (hey, you try describing it any other way) into the butter/flour mixture until it all comes together.

Turn out onto a lightly floured board, and roll out into a rectangle about 1/2 and inch thick.

Brush lightly with a tablespoon or two of room temperature (ie softened) butter.  Sprinkle some brown sugar over it, and sprinkle cinnamon over to taste (I used a lot but didn't measure, be creative).  Roll the dough up on the long edge.  Seal the ends, and cut into 1 inch pieces.

Put on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, and into a 400 F degree oven for 15-20 minutes until lightly golden.  The cinnamon smell is going to make you nuts, thankfully it doesn't take that long.

And there you have it.  If you eat one too soon, you're going to burn your mouth (voice of experience), but you can knock these out in a jiffy.  Remember, it *is* a biscuit recipe so they won't be light and fluffy cinnamon rolls, but good heavens it's certainly a worthy substitute when you don't want to wait for yeast to rise!

Bon appetit

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Potato Salad with Bacon

So, that's not really what it's called.  It doesn't have a name.  In our family it's just "potato salad", and it's what I grew up with.  A family friend, "Uncle Don" made it and refused to tell my mother and grandmother the recipe, so they sat down and analyzed the flavors.  This is their re-creation of his recipe.  There are no measurements really, so you'll have to play with proportions until you find what you like, but I'll try to approximate measurements for what I did.


2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, cubed
1/2 package really good quality bacon
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1 cup thinly sliced celery (I think)
Splash of cider vinegar


1 egg
1 cup canola oil
a few dashes of dry mustard powder
pepper to taste
a few dashes of garlic salt


Chop and cook the bacon, cook the potatoes in a pot of water.  When the bacon is crisp, take it out of the pan to drain, and put the chopped onion in the bacon grease to cook until golden. Take out of the pan and let drain and cool off, you don't want *too* much grease in there.  When the potatoes are falling off a fork, they're done, take them off the heat and drain, rinse with cool water to stop the cooking and let them finish cooling off.  If you can hold and eat a piece without hurting yourself, it's almost cool enough to finish assembling the potato salad.

While all of the above is cooking and doesn't really need your attention, slice as much celery as you want, I prefer mine thinner sliced instead of chunky, so maybe 1/4 inch or so.

To make the mayonnaise, you really need an immersion blender, also called a stick blender, and a container tall and narrow enough to use it in without having anything splash.  Put the egg, oil and spices in (you can add more spice to taste, above is just what I did) and put the blender into the oil and turn it on.  It should whip everything together in about 5 seconds.

After that's done, time to put it all together.  Put the potatoes (should be barely warm) in a big enough bowl with the bacon, onions, celery and mayonnaise, and mix gently.  Grind some fresh pepper on to taste, add a splash of vinegar and mix one last time.  Taste test it before anyone else gets it so you can see if it's to your liking.  (Hey, you went to all the trouble to cook it, you should get the first taste!)

It's good immediately, it's also awesome cold.  And yes, I've had it for breakfast.

Oh, and you *can* use mayonnaise you bought at the store, but it's so easy I just thought I'd try it myself this time.

Bon appetit!