Saturday, February 25, 2012

Joy The Baker Cookbook Spotlight and Cook-off: California Biscuits

Okay, okay....these biscuits are really called Whole Wheat Honey and Goat Cheese Drop Biscuits.  The problem is there is no way I could say, "Honey, we're having Whole Wheat Honey and Goat Cheese Drop Biscuits for breakfast."  My southern-loving buttermilk biscuit eating husband would probably run for the door.  So, I called them California Biscuits.  I described them as a healthy whole wheat drop biscuit and no one was the wiser. 

I did make some changes to Joy's original recipe.  First I used white whole wheat flour in place of the whole wheat flour.  Secondly I used tomato and basil goat cheese in place of regular goat cheese.  And, lastly, because I used tomato and basil goat cheese I omitted the honey.  

 I served these biscuits on the side, along with some scrambled eggs, in my new baby cast iron serving skillet with a wood underliner.  I have to admit, ever since I was a kid I've loved the whole breakfast skillet look.  I'm beyond excited to finally have a set of these little baby breakfast skillets.
Scrambled eggs with caramelized onions, peppers, and breakfast sausage
 Are you curious to know the verdict on these biscuits?  My husband loved them.  I don't think he even tasted the goat cheese in them at all.  Score!  I enjoyed these biscuits and found the texture of them really pleasing.  I especially loved the crispy buttery bottoms on the biscuits.  And, I really appreciated how stinking easy these biscuits came together.  After making the traditional southern biscuit for years I can now say that I have a new appreciation for the drop biscuit.  I will say that I'm slightly disappointed that you can't taste the goat cheese. I'm a fan of goat cheese and would like to actually taste it in these biscuits.  That said, I'm sure I can remedy that situation by simply adding more goat cheese next time.  I'm always up for adding more cheese!
 Whole Wheat and Goat Cheese Drop Biscuits
Slightly adapted from Joy The Baker Cookbook
Makes 8-10 biscuits

2 cups whole wheat flour (I used white whole wheat)
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) salted butter, cold, cut into cubes, plus more for the pan
4 tablespoons crumbled goat cheese (I used tomato and basil goat cheese and went heavy with it)
1 cup buttermilk, cold
2 tablespoons honey, plus more for topping (I omitted the honey)

Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat to 400 degrees F.  Place a 10-inch cast-iron skillet in the oven as it preheats.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  With your fingers, quickly incorporate the cold butter and goat cheese until the flour resembles coarse meal.  Some of the butter and cheese chunks will be the size of small pebbles; others will be the size of oat flakes.  Make a well in the center of the flour mixture.  Add the cold buttermilk to the well of the flour mixture.  Use a fork to blend together the wet and dry ingredients.  Mix until all of the flour is incorporated and no dry flour remains.  Set aside.

Note:  If you chose to add the honey to these biscuits you will need to incorporate the honey into the buttermilk and then pour it into the well.

Remove the hot skillet from the oven and add 1 tablespoon butter.  Swirl the butter around the bottom and sides of the pan until butter is melted and pan is coated.  

Spoon batter by the 1/4 cupful into the hot skillet.  About 6 biscuits will fit into the 10-inch skillet.  Biscuits should have about an inch of room separating them, but will bake up to touch one another. Place in the oven to bake for 14 to 16 minutes, until golden and tops appear dry and slightly firm.  Remove from oven.  Let rest for 5 minutes.  Remove from skillet and top with more honey (if using).  Repeat the process to cook the remaining biscuits, remembering to add another tablespoon of butter to the skillet before placing the biscuit dough inside (you want to make sure you get those crispy buttery bottoms on all your biscuits).  These biscuits are best served immediately, but will last for up to 3 days, well wrapped, at room temperature.

look at those crispy buttery bottoms!
This post is part of the Joy the Baker Cookbook Spotlight and Cook-Off sponsored by Hyperion and hosted at girlichef*


  1. They sound yummy. I would try them with the regular goat cheese and add the honey to see what that tasted like ( cause I love sweet). Yours sound like if you made them tiny, they could be filled with chicken salad and served like an appizer????? Laurel

  2. "Stinking easy" always gets my attention. Fabulous drop biscuits.


  3. Oh yes, I do love your breakfast skillets. Want some! Love the sound of your biscuits :D

  4. I'm certain the biscuits were delicious, but it's those gorgeous individual skillets with their own "coaster" that I am salivating over. Love them!!!!

  5. What could be better than this breakfast sizzling in those skillets? I like your addition of the flavored goat cheese, but I can see how 4 Tbsp would not be enough to flavor these biscuits...

  6. Brilliant! Calling them California biscuits, using a tomato basil goat cheese and wow, those skillets! Very nice Kim.
    I am working on getting my post up now...before dinner :-)

  7. I am not biscuit maker or a biscuit eater - BUT! Their relative ease plus the goat cheese makes me think that this would be something I could successfully do while delighting my family.

  8. I would probably start spreading goat cheese onto the biscuits, myself (huge fan). Love the skillets!

  9. I love your new breakfast skillets! So cute! And the biscuits sound insanely good! More goat cheese can only be a good thing.

  10. I love your little baby skillets! What a treat it would be to have breakfast in one.

    Great shot of the buttery bottoms!

  11. Love your changes Kim and you are so right. Changing the name to California would ensure more people were actually excited and came to the table when called.

  12. I would never ever argue with more cheese. Ever. :P

    These biscuits sound fantastic and I'm slightly sad that I didn't make them and went with the cupcakes instead! (but the cupcakes were also damn good.)

    Also, I LOVE those little skillets! I NEED me some of those.

  13. Very much coveting the little skillet pans--so cute. ;-) The biscuits look enticing with the eggs. I may have to go back and make these having gone with the cupcakes which were excellent--but these savory biscuits do look really good.

  14. Californian biscuits lol, great thinking! They are very diffrent from Southern biccies so I could see hubby being leery :)
    Take care..

  15. I love those baby skillets...I want them! Smart move calling them California biscuits. I just could't imagine a whole wheat biscuit...I think the white whole wheat flour was the way to go. Yours look perfect!

  16. this had me laughing. my texas raised husband is also a biscuit purist and would not stand for shenanigans when it comes to his biscuits. i need to put these babies to the test too, they look amazing.

    love the little skillets, too cute!

  17. To be honest, I've never had goat cheese - I've never had a lot of things before. But I have been experimenting and I think I am going to try this... thank you.

  18. I love your idea of calling them California biscuits! Looks like they came out marvelously, and I look forward to giving them a try as well!

  19. OMG forget the biscuits, I am breaking into your kitchen when you aren't around and steal that cast iron set!!!!!!!!!

  20. Выглядит аппетитно! Как только будут необходимые продукты, то сразу приготовлю!

  21. Thanks for sharing your food blog. I'm not a good cook, but these don't look too hard to do. I appreciate it. Connie


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