17-50: Cornmeal-Jalapeño Biscuits

Making biscuits is quick and easy, especially when following this recipe for 17-50: Cornmeal-Jalapeño Biscuits from Simply Delicious. One of my favorite rainy-day activities, I enjoy baking because the warm oven heats up the house nicely. The only feeling that can beat it is sitting by the fireplace.?  

A recipe like this could be cooked similar to a cornbread in a cast iron skillet placed near a fireplace hearth. That would be really old school, but I prefer using this biscuit method because each biscuit is baked with its own crunchy, delicious crust.

This recipe is so versatile. You can make the biscuits small for appetizer-sized portions or you can make dinner sized biscuits as a side dish.

The TIPS section speaks truth yet again. Be very careful when cutting jalapeño peppers and make sure to remove all the seeds! ?

Ingredients. Some unique items include buttermilk, fresh cilantro (still planted in dirt), and organic jalapeños from our CSA box.

First, I put all the dry ingredients into a bowl and mixed them all together. Flour, baking powder, baking soda, coriander, cumin, and salt go into the bowl. I added more salt because Simply Delicious tends to underestimate the amount of salt needed and the final product tastes more like cardboard than bread.

I stopped at this point to complete the mise-en-place. I chopped the cilantro and cleaned the jalapeño peppers. Dicing it into small pieces isn’t easy, takes patience, and requires you to wash your hands afterwards. I am getting faster at doing fine cuts like this so I think my knife skills are getting better. ?

The butter has to be “just right” to create biscuits. Not too cold, not too warm, just right. My butter was soft enough to cut with the pastry cutter, but still cold when I started. It warmed up fast as I chopped it all together and the mixture formed coarse crumbs.

Next, I add the buttermilk, cilantro, and jalapeño pepper. Mix this together until a dough forms.

At this stage, the mixture roughly resembles a dough. It is sticky, but a little dry and crumbly. Pour some flour on the counter top, turn this dough out, and press it into an even thickness.

With this recipe, I got to break in our new biscuit cutters. I prefer the fluted edge shape which came out great with this stiff dough. The edge of these biscuit cutters is similar to the edge of the pan I used to bake 16-54: Lemony Cottage Cheese Pie. These 3 different sized rings all fit inside of each other for easy storage. The cutters are double-sided, each circle can cut round and fluted edge biscuits, just flip it upside down.

Such colorful biscuits! Green and yellow and brown, with flecks of black smoked salt. All different sizes of biscuits are set on the rack to cool after 12 minutes of baking. Remember to cut the baking time in half and flip your pans midway if you use 2 pans in one oven. The biscuits will come out even colored on both pans instead of scorched on top pan and underdone on the bottom pan.

Jamie was making cream of mushroom soup while I made this biscuit recipe. This cornmeal biscuit makes a great side dish for many kinds of soup. As a final product photo and a dish, the soup and biscuit go well together. The green chunks of jalapeño add spicy flavor to the earthy soup, making both your eyes and tongue very happy. ?

Grade: A