Peppery Parmesan Biscuits

Yes, I went there.  After Josh, Muffin, and I enjoyed the cheeses last night on the groaning cheese board, I couldn’t resist finding a use for the grana padano that didn’t involve tomato sauce.  And I wanted to have biscuits so that I could make a special syrup that my mom makes and have them with breakfast tomorrow.  And biscuits and ham go together really well.  (Yes, I know.  I’m rationalizing.)

So, I used up my remaining Pioneer Baking Mix in my special scooper container and added to it.  You can really use any baking mix (including your own if you have a recipe for it…and if you do, please share–especially if it is shelf-stable) or just the dry and fat ingredients in your favorite biscuit recipe.

They were awesome, very peppery (and Muffin didn’t even complain about the spice!), with that aromatic twinge that you can only get from fresh ground black pepper.  Seriously, if you have not bought a pepper grinder, invest in one today.  I’m on like my twelfth pepper grinder since I got married (exaggerating here only a bit), and I don’t function well without a working one.  Seriously.  Go buy one.  I’ll wait.  Wal-Mart is open 24 hours a day in most places, and they sell one that probably works.  Maybe.  I could always use pepper grinder tester as a second career.  Not many would pass testing if I was a tester.  I’ve strongly considered having Josh rig me up one of the ones Alton Brown used in Good Eats with the power drill.  I wonder…

But I digress.  Here you are wanting a recipe and I’m waxing semi-poetic on the subject of pepper grinders (really…maybe I should tell him I want that for Mother’s Day).

So, here’s your recipe fix, such as it is.

Peppery Parmesan Biscuits

Note the big flecks of pepper. That is the sign of true goodness.

1 1/2 cups baking mix (or 9 biscuits-worth of any other baking mix or biscuit recipe)

2 tablespoons finely, freshly grated Parmesan-style cheese (I used grana padano grated with my long thin Microplane), such as Parmigiano-Reggiano  (Do not use the stuff in the green cylinder!)  These are special occasion biscuits, so use the best cheese you can afford.

1 teaspoon plus ? of freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup milk (not buttermilk–while I love buttermilk biscuits, it would overpower the pepper and cheese here), or possibly a bit more if your dough doesn’t come together

Dump baking mix (or biscuit recipe) in a medium bowl (everything you need except any liquid ingredients).  Grate cheese into mixture.  Grind pepper over mixture.  Stir.  If you don’t see much in the way of pepper flakes, grind some more in the bowl.  Stir again and repeat if necessary.  You want a LOT of pepper.

Add milk and stir just until mixture comes together.  I had to add a bit more.

If you are going to roll and cut the biscuits, flour a board or counter heavily before rolling them out.  This dough is very sticky.  Flour the surface of the dough and the rolling pin.  Trust me on this.  And parchment alone or even lightly dusted with flour parchment isn’t going to save you from heartache on this one.  Place on cookie sheet after cutting.

If you are doing drop biscuits, use an ice cream scoop to scoop blobs onto a cookie sheet.  The two or three that I did this with (like the one you see in the picture) I shaped a bit after placing them on the cookie sheet.

Bake biscuits in a preheated 450 degree oven for 11 to 13 minutes (I set the timer for 12 minutes, and it was perfect).  Let cool slightly on the sheet, but serve warm with butter (and Sister Syrup if you are having them for breakfast).

Muffin Approved

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