The rare Saturday free of responsibilities means doing fun things and not worrying about a gourmet dinner for a change. I took advantage of the day to use a birthday gift card to a nail salon for some pampering, a Target run, and Home Depot for supplies for my plants (and adding a new one to my growing collection). Everything, but a stop at Starbucks! It was a pretty chill day. Believe it or not, the last thing I wanted to do was cook a whole big meal. I love to cook, but when I get a rare day of no expectations, I want to just take advantage and veg out on the couch with a good book or foodie magazine and not think about the time passing by or any sort of schedule to keep. (This is a big reason why I plan our weekly menu in advance.)
Tonight, to shortcut things a little, I whipped up “Bobo’s Classic Gravy” from Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia Table cookbook. After taking note of freezing 2/3 of the biscuits from my previous post on her buttermilk biscuits, I was able to just pull some out of the freezer and toss in a pan for the oven. No thawing required! Half my dinner was already underway. I took a “cross-tip” from both Joanna and from my friend Faith over at Faith, Hope, & Sparkle. Joanna recommends brushing the biscuits with a mixture of egg and buttermilk prior to baking. Faith was recently telling me how she dips hers in melted butter (as her mama used to do) prior to baking. Instead of brushing the biscuits, I dunked each biscuit in the buttermilk-egg mixture before plopping each one in my Lodge cast-iron skillet for baking!
While the pillowy, soft biscuits were sizzling away in their oven-sauna, I laid 12oz breakfast sausage patties in a hot pan to imbue their flavor and essence for the creamy gravy to come. Once the fat was rendered (and the patties cooked through), I removed them to a cutting board and whisked 1/3c all-purpose flour into the skillet making a beautiful tan roux. I then whisked in 4c of whole milk. Yes, whole milk. We exclusively buy whole milk in our house. If you’re going to drink milk, why not fully (wholly) enjoy it? Plus, more and more studies are showing that full-fat dairy is better for you and more satisfying in the grand scheme of things than its lower calorie siblings.
Once the milk had married with the roux and thickened well, I chopped the sausage patties and stirred them into their milk bath. My one question here however, is why not just use a 12oz log of breakfast sausage instead of the patties. You would skip a couple steps by simply cooking ground sausage in the pan and then moving on to add the flour and milk instead of removing the patties and chopping them up to add them back to the pan… Plus you might even save yourself a couple of dishes to wash. If I ever meet Joanna, I may ask her this. Or maybe not. Maybe I’ll just blubber about how much I admire her work and think it’d be cool to have my own tiny empire like hers one day.
For now, I’ll stop worrying about her methods and instead focus on the end result. My beautifully golden biscuits were swathed in silky, sausage-enriched gravy and generously dusted with S&P. It was the perfect boomerang from this week’s biscuits and homemade strawberry jam & honey (recipe also from Magnolia Table). All in all, these biscuits were a rousing success either which way we had them!
What do you like to top your biscuits with?
Currently Reading: Bon Appétit magazine, March 2013 issue