Biscuits and Gravy
For the biscuits:
- 2 ½ cups flour
- 1 Tablespoon baking powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons table salt
- 8 Tablespoons cold butter (1 stick), cut into small cubes
- 1 cup cold milk
For the gravy:
- ½ pound pork or turkey sausage (or 4 tablespoons butter if you want to make it vegetarian)
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ cups milk
- 1 teaspoon black pepper (fresh cracked is best)
- Salt to taste
For the biscuits:
- Preheat oven to 425 °F.
- Mix together flour, baking powder and salt until well combined.
- Cut in butter until mixture resembles wet sand.
- Slowly pour in the milk (you may not need it all) and stir until mixture comes together and is slightly sticky.
- Turn out onto a floured surface and flatten out into a rectangle.
- Fold the rectangle over itself width wise (like folding it into a book), then fold it over again lengthwise. Flatten out again and repeat a couple of times.
- Roll out to about 1 inch thickness and use a 3 inch biscuit cutter or glass to cut out as many biscuits as possible.
- Mush together the scraps and fold them over as described above before rolling out and cutting more biscuits. Continue until out of dough (I usually get about a dozen).
- Bake for 15 minutes or until browned on top.
For the gravy:
- Brown sausage in a large skillet (if not using sausage, melt butter and whisk in flour to make a roux, then add milk).
- Sprinkle flour over cooked sausage and stir; cook for about 1 minute to get rid of the raw flour taste.
- Slowly pour in milk, stirring constantly. Cook until it bubbles and thickens – if it’s too thick, add more milk to thin.
- Stir in salt and pepper.
- Split a biscuit in half and pour gravy over it liberally.
- Do not make any plans for the rest of the day. Biscuits and Gravy will prevent any productivity.
Want more breakfast? How about Perfect Pancakes?
Obligatory (mostly) fictional backstory:
Biscuits and gravy originated as a hearty breakfast for hard-working farmers to fill them up and keep them going throughout the morning chores of milking, herding, slopping, Pilates, etc. To be honest, I have absolutely no idea HOW anyone could do chores after eating a plate of biscuits and gravy.
All I have the motivation and energy to do after having this for breakfast is to sit on the couch and watch infomercials. This is actually a big reason that I usually serve biscuits and gravy as breakfast for dinner, because then we can just crash in our food coma and not feel guilty about wasting a whole day.
Some tips for making biscuits, especially if you’ve never made them before: you want the butter to be very cold. You can use a food processor or a stand mixer to cut it into the flour mixture if you don’t want to use your fingers but I find it rather therapeutic to pinch the butter into the flour.
You may not need all of the milk, basically you want the mixture to be slightly sticky but not so sticky you can’t do anything with it. Folding the dough over several times will give you the nice layered fluffy biscuit you’re looking for – when I found that tip it was truly a game changer.
If you’re not a fan of gravy, these are also great for making homemade breakfast sandwiches with a fried egg and an optional sausage patty. Or, you can just eat them plain with jam, because that in my opinion is the best way to eat a biscuit.
My personal favorite jam is blackberry, because it reminds me of the book If You Give A Moose A Muffin, which is part of the If You Give A Mouse a Cookie series, which reminds me of chocolate chip cookies, which remind me of the time that my sister and I made homemade chocolate chip cookies and misread the recipe which led to us omitting the brown sugar which led to the cookies turning out as little sandy rocks (we still talk about this some 15 years later, so you can see how memorable they were!).
Little sandy rocks remind me of the time I went to the beach in New Jersey with my grandparents and found a bunch of shells and a fully intact seagull skull, which shockingly my grandparents let me take home with me provided I bleached it. Good times. Goooood times. I was a weird kid, and now I’m a weird adult, which you probably figured out if you’ve read any of my blog posts.