Sunday, May 29, 2011
Sweet Potato Biscuits with Ham, Mustard and Honey
This biscuit recipe was published by Molly Wizenberg in Bon Appétit (article here and recipe here. I was in the mood for a side dish to complement a warm lentil salad (coincidentally also by Molly Wizenberg and published on Orangette); this fit the bill perfectly. The sweet potato biscuits went very well with the ham, mustard (Dijon or French’s, to taste) and honey; they’d also be great as a snack or as part of a brunch. I originally thought the recipe called for for 1 ¾ lbs of sweet potatoes, but you only need ¾ cup of purée. It turns out I misread the directions; it’s actually one sweet potato weighing ¾ lb! I’ll write it more clearly below. I froze my leftover purée and will probably use it to make something from this book, if not something else I’ve bookmarked. I also recommend greasing two pans instead of one, to make more biscuits. I know I had to improvise for the cookie cutter, but the original recipe says it yields about 25 biscuits, and there’s no way that’ll fit in my 9-inch cake pan (I got 16).
a ¾ pound red-skinned sweet potato, peeled, cut into ½-inch cubes
1 ¾ cups all purpose flour
1 Tbsp (packed) dark brown sugar
2 ½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
½ tsp baking soda
a pinch of cayenne pepper
8 Tbsp (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes
2 Tbsp butter, melted
1/3 cup chilled buttermilk (I use lactose-free milk with a splash of lemon juice)
Dijon mustard (or French’s for the profane)
6 oz thinly sliced country ham or Black Forest ham (ideally preservative-free)
Cook sweet potato in medium saucepan of boiling salted water until tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain, cool, and mash.
Position rack in lower third of oven; preheat to 425 °F. Butter bottom and sides of two 9-inch cake pans with 1 ½-inch-high sides.
Whisk flour and next 5 ingredients in large bowl. Add cubed butter to flour mixture; toss to coat and rub in with fingertips until mixture resembles coarse meal. Whisk ¾ cup mashed sweet potatoes and buttermilk substitute in medium bowl. Add to flour mixture; toss with fork. Gather mixture in bowl, kneading until dough comes together. Turn dough out onto floured work surface and pat into 1-inch-thick round. Using 1 ½-inch round biscuit cutter, cut out biscuits, flouring cutter after each cut. Gather scraps; pat into 1-inch-thick round. Cut out additional biscuits (do not reuse scraps more than once).
Arrange biscuits side by side in prepared cake pans. Brush with melted butter. Bake until puffed and golden on top and tester inserted into center biscuit comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Cool 10 minutes in pan. Turn biscuits out and gently pull them apart. Cut each biscuit in half crosswise.
Spread bottom half of each biscuit with mustard, then top each with sliced ham and second half of biscuit. Serve with honey.