My CSA strikes again with these yummy Sour Cream Chive Biscuits.
When I saw we had chives in our CSA basked a couple of weeks back, I was thrilled. I love fresh chives. They are mandatory when I make baked potatoes. My kids are completely on board with that. I always have to make sure I chop up enough because those chives get generously spooned on top of hot buttery spuds.
Then when I opened up our weekly CSA box and saw the chive BLOSSOMS? Those pretty purple flowers were gracefully sitting atop the longest, most graceful chive stems I had ever seen! I was so excited! I knew I had to make something so I could use the pretty blossoms in a photo shoot. #propportunities
There’s one thing about creativity. You can’t force it. If someone says, “Wash the dishes,” and your head really isn’t into it, (okay, I admit it, my head is never into it) you can still wash the dishes. You can even do it well, as long as you put in the effort.
Creativity is a horse of a different color. If someone says, “Here, take these things and make them pretty.” If your creativity is flowing, then it’s almost too easy. Ideas are coming from everywhere and they are plenty. When my creativity is not flowing, then it is hard to take even one simple appealing photo. That happens sometimes with the blog. It happens when I’m developing a recipe and it happens when I’m shooting it.
Thankfully, it doesn’t happen often. Usually, I can’t stop coming up with ideas. With today’s post, just seeing those pretty purple blossoms inspired me to create a recipe stat and shoot it. I’m a biscuit loving fool so I thought I’d try swapping out my beloved buttermilk in my favorite Fluffy Buttermilk Biscuits for sour cream. Those biscuits are a fave-oh-fave with butter and honey at breakfast. I love a variation of them as Cheddar Buttermilk Biscuits served with soup. Adding another savory flavor to my biscuit arsenal certainly seemed in order now that I had these lovely chives to work with.
Sour cream is an easy substitute for the buttermilk. It has the lovely tang of buttermilk but with slightly more richness. Sour Cream Chive Biscuits are as wonderful as the original biscuit, but now in a new savory flavor that would be so delicious for breakfast with some eggs. (Ooh! Make a breakfast sandwich!) Or accompanying your favorite soup or as a fresh hot bread choice for dinner or, or, to round out a main dish salad! They would even be a great sub for the biscuits I used in Creamy Chicken and Biscuits!
Now let’s get to the controversial part of this post…the cutting. I swear swear swear by cutting biscuits into squares. Every single biscuit post I have is cut into squares. Why? Because the first cutting is the BEST cutting. If you use round cutters and have scraps, that second rolling never rises as tall as the first and it’s never as fluffy as the first. I spent a lot of time figuring out all the secrets to some great buttermilk biscuits and cutting them only once is one of them. (Tip: Read Fluffy Buttermilk Biscuits as your primer before making these biscuits.)
So why did I cut my Sour Cream Chive Biscuits into rounds this time? Well, I thought you might be tired of looking at square biscuits. I wanted to shake it up a little, you know…let the creativity floooowwww….(I also broke that one cut rule for my Strawberry Shortcake post.)
I liked shooting the round biscuits for a change. Of course, the biscuits that were from the second rolling/cutting were not as good as the first. Not that anyone would have turned one of them down, but they simply never have all the lofty qualities of that first magical roll and they are never the first ones chosen from the batch.
I have a friend who thinks it’s sacrilege not to cut biscuits into rounds. I get it. I mean, how often do you see a square hamburger bun? I’ll always leave myself the freedom to cut rounds for a pretty post or if I’m making something where I specifically want that presentation. Like today, my creativity was feeling like the biscuits should be round. But when I’m making biscuits every day at home, even these Sour Cream Chive Biscuits…it’s almost always gonna be hipper, loftier, and fluffier…
to be square :)
Sour Cream and Chive Biscuits
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 4 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt see note
- 2 Tablespoons salted or unsalted butter (cold and cut into cubes)
- 2 Tablespoons shortening I use non-hydrogenated
- 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh chives
- 1 1/4 cups sour cream I used light
- 2 Tablespoons milk
- extra sour cream/milk for brushing the tops
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- Using a pastry blender or your finger tips, quickly cut shortening into flour mixture until combined.
- After you've cut in the shortening, cut cold butter into the flour mixture until you have various sizes no larger than peas. (See picture and videos within original Fluffy Buttermilk Biscuit post to see how this should look and for extra tips on the process.) This should also take less than a minute. You want your butter to stay cold so work quickly.
- Add the chopped chives and toss in the flour mixture until coated.
- Whisk together sour cream and milk. Make a small well in the center of the flour mixture and add the sour cream mixture.
- Working from the outside in, bring the flour into the center with a large spoon, scooping and turning the bowl until the sour cream and milk are incorporated into the flour. Use a light hand here. We're not vigorously stirring, but simply gently tossing the flour together with the sour cream and milk until it's combined.
- Turn the wet sticky dough out onto a well floured surface. Keep a small pile of extra flour on hand to add to your surface or your hands as needed. You'll see in the videos that I'm pretty liberal about using the flour in this step.
- Flour your hands and bring dough together, then lightly fold it in half in a gentle kneading motion.
- Do this about 10-11 times until your dough comes together and is beginning to feel smooth. This step helps to further combine your mixture while the folding created layers of buttery goodness that will help your biscuits rise nice and tall.
- On a floured surface, pat dough down until it's just under an inch thick. Using a floured cutter, cut your biscuits into desired shape, making sure to push straight down with the cutter. Do not twist to release it as you may seal the edges of the dough, making it more difficult for them to rise. Re-roll the scraps and cut again. (see notes for my one cut square biscuits)
- Flip cut biscuits upside down and place on an ungreased baking sheet. You can place them close together but not touching for softer edges (they'll bake together as they rise) or place them further apart to bake completely separate for a more golden, firmer edge.
- Brush tops with sour cream thinned with a bit of milk and bake until they have risen nice and tall and are golden brown on top, about 15 minutes. Serve warm.
*Biscuits can be stored overnight at room temperature, wrapped lightly in foil. Even though they are best the first day, they reheat nicely in a toaster oven.
*I use coarse kosher salt which ends up adding less salt for the same measurement because it is coarse. If you use table salt as well as salted butter, you may want to reduce the salt to 1/2 teaspoon.
*If you like your biscuits crusty on all sides, place them far enough apart on the baking sheet so that they don't touch another biscuit when they bake. They may also bake in less time, so keep an eye on them.
*While I decided to use a round cutter for this post, cutting and rerolling scraps is not my preferred method. I prefer patting them into a square about 1" thick and cutting them into 9 big pieces (cutting lines like a tic tac toe board.) With that method there is no re-rolling of scraps and every biscuit has the benefit of the loft and rise of the first roll.
*Save yourself some dishes. I keep the bowl I mixed the sour cream and milk in off to the side until it's time to brush the tops. Sometimes there's enough sour cream bits in the bowl for me to just add a touch of milk and sop all of it up with my brush. If not, I just add a bit more to the bowl.
The Merchant Baker © 2016