These biscuits were divine. A bit heavier than non-GF biscuits, but I anticipated that. Maybe 7 years of GF eating have taught me not to expect the identical consistency as my memory believes there should be. I don’t know. I do know that I have found equally flavorful and delicious foods with a bit of help from my favorite gluten-free flour blend.
Really. Gluten-free baking doesn’t have to be so hard.
It needn’t be so intensely intimidating.
Don’t get me wrong.
I know that it has taken me so long to get ready to take risks (and bake my traditional gluten recipes with gluten-free flour mixes). We can all calculate $$$$$ per pound versus $ per pound for the ingredients? I know that was a reason for me to avoid experimenting for a while. That and I didn’t want to spend “so much time” (which is now about 20 minutes every couple weeks) mixing up flours to create a mix.
I know some people love the premade, marketed mixes, but they are cost-prohibitive for me. Since I use the flours separately for cooking and baking, buying yet another special flour mix didn’t make sense for our budget. Maybe it does for yours. I encourage you to find a blend that you love and try a favorite recipe from the past. If your blend has xanthan gum in it, you will more than likely be able to use it for a 1:1 exchange for the flour called for in your favorite family recipe. (Unless it’s bread.. and then.. well.. then GF breads are a bit different sometimes and require adjustments more than just a flour swap.)
This week, Cook’s Illustrated arrived at my house some time in the last week of so and it had a recipe for “Drop Biscuits” that looked like one I’ve made since my college days when biscuits & gravy were all the rage (well, among the guys in our large group of friends anyway). The only difference was how they used the buttermilk and butter together to make it lumpy before adding to the dough. Huh. Maybe I should try it? Yes. I should definitely try it. (Before I go any further, please know that Mary Frances has some AWESOME drop biscuit recipes that use the flours separately and are DEFINITELY worth trying out!)
I almost didn’t post this. Instead I’ve been planning a post to put together Thanksgiving and Holiday recipes as a blog-event. But, well… I am gonna have to get some help from GF Mommy & Sea on the Blog-Event-Sponsorship front, because I’m clueless. (Consider this a shout-out, all! What do you think? Are you up for it, everyone? Details TBFO (to be figured out) LOL).
While I figure that out, and send out a few email pleas, here’s the recipe for the biscuits your looking at. While they are best warm (aren’t all biscuits?), reheating is definitely an option….. if they last that long.
Gluten-Free Scooped Biscuits (A college + Cook’s Illustrated Combo)
(Makes 12 biscuits if scooped.)
2 cups GF Flour Mix
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt (or 1/2 teaspoon salt if using salted butter)
1 cup cold milk + 1 Tablespoon lemon juice (for the coddled milk)
8 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooledDirections:
- Preheat oven to 450F.
- Add 1 Tablespoon lemon juice to cold milk and set aside until thickened (about 8 – 10 minutes). Keep it in the refrigerator until you need it again (Step 5).
- Cut butter into pats and melt quickly – but don’t boil! – butter in short burts in the microwave. Stirring after each 15-20 until melted, but not simmering. Set aside to cool a bit.
- Whisk together dry ingredients (GF flour mix, baking powder, baking soda, sugar and salt) in a small mixing bowl.
- Pour the melted butter into the cold milk while stirring. (The Cook’s Illustrated step.) The butter will form small clumps within the milk. Don’t worry – while it looks weird, it helps disperse the butter in little chunks throughout the dough when it bakes better.
- Add milk/butter mixture to dry ingredients and stir until combined. The dough is should not be too sticky at all. If it is, add a tablespoon of GF flour mix at a time until it comes together better but isn’t super-sticky.
- Scoop out with an ice cream scoop and drop onto a silpat/cookie sheet.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. If you don’t want a crunchy exterior of your biscuit, brush the bake biscuits with melted butter before serving to ease-off on the crunch factor.
Happy Baking all!
PS. (January 2008) I just used this same recipe for dumplings with a chicken and dumpling soup. I made them smaller and they turned out great! I just made smaller balls and dropped them on top of my soup to let them simmer away until done. It was delicious that night -and was also good reheated with the soup for my lunch the next day.