Buttermilk Biscuits with Mushroom Gravy | A Thought For Food

The moment came where I had to make a decision: do I go the easy route and bust out the food processor or mix the butter in by hand. Normally, I’d go with the former, but right now I feel like taking my time and getting my hands dirty. This is how Jessica does it in her book, Stir, and, having just finished reading it, I felt compelled to follow in her footsteps. Rubbing each cube of butter into the flour with my fingertips, I could focus on the feel of the dough and how it was forming. At the point it resembled a “coarse meal,” I picked up the bowl of buttermilk I’d mixed together (a combination of milk and white vinegar, because we rarely have buttermilk in the house) and drizzled it in as I circulated a wooden spoon.  When all was combined, I gave it a taste. As a cook, I can’t help but try uncooked dough before it hits the oven. This met all the marks: buttery, a touch of sweetness, and a hit of salt. While the biscuits baked, I mixed together the vegetarian mushroom gravy. We had some cherry tomatoes around, which gave the sauce some acid and sweetness. I’ve now made this twice for breakfast, though, I think it’d would make for a delightful dinner as well. Just throw together a light green salad on the side and you have a meal.

I should step back and talk about Stir a bit more. This was a book that I knew nothing about before its release. I didn’t know who Jessica was despite her living in Cambridge and being a fellow food blogger who created her site, Sweet Amandine, around the same time I did. But as soon as her book came out, her name kept popping up around the blogosphere. I marked it down on my books to read this summer and I’m so glad I did. This isn’t a cookbook, which she states very clearly from the start, though there are recipes. Instead, Stir: My Broken Brain and the Meals That Brought Me Home focuses a brain aneurism that she endures and the subsequent complications from the illness and corresponding procedures. But food has always played a powerful role in her life. Following her time in the hospital, she struggles to get back into the kitchen… so she turns it into a goal. If I can bake x, it means I’m still me. The writing is striking, personal and honest. But, most importantly, it’s inspiring. It made me think hard and deep about the important things in my life. And it made me want to get into the kitchen and make something, with my hands, and feed it to the people I love.
Buttermilk Biscuits with Mushroom Gravy | A Thought For FoodButtermilk Biscuits with Mushroom Gravy | A Thought For FoodButtermilk Biscuits with Mushroom Gravy | A Thought For FoodButtermilk Biscuits with Mushroom Gravy | A Thought For FoodButtermilk Biscuits with Mushroom Gravy | A Thought For FoodButtermilk Biscuits with Mushroom Gravy | A Thought For Food

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  • August 19, 2015 - 10:48 am

    Liren - Thank you for introducing me to Jessica, her blog, and her book! I have grown a special place in my heart for biscuits, and lately, I’ve also been enjoying using my hands – why does it feel more real that way? I love how you made a vegetarian gravy, too, Brian – I would sop it up very happily!ReplyCancel

  • August 19, 2015 - 10:52 am

    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar - That gravy is so delightful! I want to put it on everything from those biscuits to french fries! Yum!ReplyCancel

  • August 19, 2015 - 9:43 pm

    Tieghan - Oh butter by hand is the only way to go. Plus, I HATE cleaning my food processor, so I avoid getting it out at all cost. :)

    This looks insane!! Loving that gravy!ReplyCancel

  • August 21, 2015 - 8:26 am

    Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabbles - So when I think of mushroom gravy, it’s always of the creamy variety. I want to try this, with tomatoes. It sounds lovely!ReplyCancel

  • August 22, 2015 - 3:26 pm

    Sandra Lea - This is good ol’ comfort food. I am always happy to see a recipe for a vegetarian gravy. I can’t wait to try this but plan on waiting for the weather to cool down, I don’t want to turn my oven on right now. As you well know, the weather in the Boston area has been hot and humid lately.ReplyCancel

  • August 25, 2015 - 8:25 am

    Joanne - Stir has been on my reading bucket list also. It definitely sounds inspirational, but also the kind of book that makes you think! And want to get in the kitchen ASAP. I am so into this veg biscuits and gravy. Perfect for late summer/fall brunching!ReplyCancel

  • August 25, 2015 - 11:05 am

    Rebecca {foodie with family} - Stir is now on my “to-read” list! Biscuits are one of those things that are absolutely defining to my life, having grown up watching my grandma make her good, southern buttermilk biscuits my whole life, so this post really hits home for me. Always by hand. Always get the flour under your fingernails. Somehow the biscuits taste more like they should that way.ReplyCancel

  • August 25, 2015 - 12:03 pm

    Meredith in sock monkey slippers - Stir has been on my list so, it looks like it needs to happen soon. And this recipe! Hats off to you sir.ReplyCancel

  • August 28, 2015 - 7:01 pm

    todd wagner - Those biscuits look perfectly flaky! Comfort food at it’s absolute best :)ReplyCancel

Burrata with Cherries and Balsamic Roasted Peaches | A Thought For Food

My love for all things dairy, fishy, and eggy keeps me from full-on vegetarianism/veganism. Eric and I both agree that the best meal from our honeymoon wasn’t at the many restaurants we dined at, but, instead, the lunch we consumed together on a park bench in a small Provincial town. A baguette, the tupperware of tapenade, and a container of creamy, stinky cheese. The summer sun beating down from above. We moaned with every hunk of bread that was shoved into our mouths. Our heads shook side to side in disbelief at how something so simple could be so decadent and perfect.

When we dine out we’d much rather finish our meals with a cheese course than any chocolate creation that’s on the menu. After many disappointing endings to dinners at upscale restaurants (one exception being The French Laundry, which blew us away), when a cheese plate presents itself, that’s our dessert of choice. Which is why I ended up going the sweet route with this burrata. With all the recipes out there, I didn’t find many that treated it as a finale.

As I’ve said before, I’m not much of a baker and rarely prepare anything more than a quick, rustic crisp for dinner guests. So, I did what I feel comfortable doing and roasted some peaches with balsamic, which were drizzled over the cream-filled cheese, and topped with some chopped cherries and a buttery oat crumble.

Burrata with Cherries and Balsamic Roasted Peaches | A Thought For FoodBurrata with Cherries and Balsamic Roasted Peaches | A Thought For FoodBurrata with Cherries and Balsamic Roasted Peaches | A Thought For FoodBurrata with Cherries and Balsamic Roasted Peaches | A Thought For FoodBurrata with Cherries and Balsamic Roasted Peaches | A Thought For FoodView full post »

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  • August 12, 2015 - 10:52 am

    Marla Meridith - I love this simple dessert idea…such a great idea to pair the burrata with roasted fruit.ReplyCancel

  • August 12, 2015 - 11:07 am

    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar - I love finishing (and starting) meals with a cheese plate too! This is a really unique way to use up summer fruit. Yum!ReplyCancel

  • August 12, 2015 - 11:31 am

    Gerry @ Foodness Gracious - Always the best meals, cheese and bread every time :)ReplyCancel

  • August 12, 2015 - 1:54 pm

    Liz @ The Lemon Bowl - I am so with you on the cheese course. This is the most perfect summertime dessert.ReplyCancel

  • August 12, 2015 - 11:36 pm

    Tieghan - The simplest is always the best and this is BEAUTIFUL! :)ReplyCancel

  • August 13, 2015 - 9:19 am

    Joanne - But it’s still acceptable to have this for lunch or breakfast right?! Because I see that happening.ReplyCancel

  • August 13, 2015 - 9:46 am

    Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabbles - What a gorgeous way to enjoy all this wonderful summer fruit. Love.ReplyCancel

  • August 13, 2015 - 9:53 am

    Nik@ABrownTable - I love burrata and you’re right this is probably one of the best ways to end a meal. It’s a delicate touch to a dessert such as this, which is perfect (BTW, I need to make it to the French Laundry at some point)ReplyCancel

  • August 13, 2015 - 1:31 pm

    dixya | food, pleasure, and health - being a chocolate and cheese lover, i cant ever decide on just one..my boyfriends sister introduced me to burrata few years ago and we are hooked. this bowl looks delicious!!!ReplyCancel

  • August 13, 2015 - 10:27 pm

    Ben Maclain | Havocinthekitchen - Even though I usually opt for a chocolate dessert while eating out, I would easily dich and sophisticated chocolate dessert for this one! I mean, burrata, fruit, and lovely topping – just perfect marriage. Count me on, please:)ReplyCancel

  • August 15, 2015 - 6:50 am

    Currently Crushing On – aug 15 2015. | How Sweet It Is - […] right this very second i have a huge ball of burrata in my fridge and it must be eaten with roasted peaches and cherries. […]ReplyCancel

  • August 23, 2015 - 6:22 pm

    Claudia | The Brick Kitchen - Gorgeous! I have never used cheese in dessert but this looks like a perfect combination – will be giving it a go. xReplyCancel

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