When I plan out our family’s meals for the week, I tend to focus on the main dishes. I try to make sure we have a variety of proteins (chicken, beef, cheese, etc.) and I usually include one dish from each of my kid-friendly categories. Side dishes are a complete afterthought. Sometimes I don’t even plan them out, I just keep staples like rice and couscous around with the idea that I’ll throw something together at the last minute. In general this tends to work ok, but it can also lead to a bit of boredom.
These drop biscuits are a nice addition to my side dish repertoire. They come together really quickly and have lots of variations (see recipe below) so that I can keep the blahs at bay. You do have to keep buttermilk on hand, but that isn’t as much of a problem as I used to think. Apparently, buttermilk lasts a pretty long time (even if the carton has been opened). You can freeze it in 1 cup portions to make it last even longer if you need to. In a pinch you can create “makeshift” buttermilk with regular lemon juice and regular milk. And, if you still have some leftover buttermilk, there is always pancakes (which are totally acceptable for dinner in our house).
Buttermilk Drop Biscuits (adapted from Cook’s Country magazine)
- 2 cups (10 ounces) all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 8 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- cooking spray
- Heat oven to 475 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a medium bowl mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and salt.
- In a small bowl (or use a 2-cup liquid measuring cup) mix together the buttermilk and melted butter. Stir until clumps form.
- Pour the buttermilk mixture into the flour mixture. Stir until the flour mixture is just incorporated.
- Grease a 1/4 cup measuring cup with cooking spray. Fill with the greased cup with the biscuit batter and level off. Drop the batter onto the prepared baking sheet (you might need to tap the bottom of the cup to get the batter to come out). Repeat with the remaining batter, greasing the measuring cup each time, spacing the biscuits about 1 1/2 inches apart.
- Bake for 12-14 minutes, until tops are golden brown. Let cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes.
Variations: For cheddar-pimiento biscuits, add 1 3/4 cup shredded extra-sharp cheese and 1/4 cup finely chopped jarred pimientos to the flour mixture in step 2. For mustard-dill biscuits (which is what I made in the photos above), add 1 Tablespoon fresh dill to flour mixture in step 1 and 2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard to buttermilk mixture in step 3. For rosemary-olive biscuits, add 1/4 cup finely chopped pitted kalamata olives and 1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary to the flour mixture in step 2.
Makes: 12 biscuits (I actually only got 11 from this recipe, but I probably wasn’t as vigilant about keeping the 1/4-cup scoops as level as I should have.)
Time: 25 minutes