Parmesan Pepper Drop Biscuits

This  recipe is adapted from one on the Serious Eats site that they then, in turn, attribute to Cook’s illustrated. Some of the best recipes come from tinkering with those that went before!

These biscuits are great with dinner or can replace scones for breakfast. The beauty is they come together much quicker than scones and don’t require the chilling time before baking, so they are perfect for a weeknight meal. The cheese and pepper add some character to the biscuits. They also make for a great ham sandwich!

This recipe makes 12 2-3 inch biscuits.

Ingredients:

2 c. all purpose flour

2 t. baking powder

1/2 t. baking soda

1 t. sugar

1 scant t. kosher salt

3 T. grated parmesan cheese (make sure it is a good parmesan, like regianno, as the taste will come through)

1/2 t. ground black pepper (or more to taste)

1 c. cold buttermilk (keep in the refrigerator right up until you need to use it)

1 stick of unsalted butter (8 T.) melted and then cooled to close to room temp (but still liquid)

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 475°F.
  2. Melt the butter in a small pan over low heat and then set aside to cool.
  3. Line a cookie sheet or sheet pan with parchment paper or Silpat mat.
  4. In a large bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt, parmesan and pepper with a fork until very thoroughly blended.
  5. Pour the cold buttermilk into a bowl or glass measuring cup (at least 2 cups in size, preferably larger) and add 6 T.  (or 3/4) of the melter butter to the buttermilk, reserving the remaining 2 T. (You can eyeball this part rather than measure). Stir with a fork until the butter begins to form clumps or curds.
  6. Add the buttermilk mixture to the dry ingredients and stir with a spatula or wooden spoon until just combined and the dough is beginning to come away from the sides of the bowl.
  7. Grease a 1/4 cup measure (or small scoop or large dinner spoon) with Pam spray or a neutral cooking oil (like canola).
  8. Scoop the biscuit mixture up and drop it onto the prepared pan (you may have to shake a bit to get it to release). The dough should form a mound about 2 inches across and 1 1/2 to 2 inches tall.  You can nudge the edges with your finger if they seem a bit raggedy.
  9. Brush the tops of the biscuits with the remaining melted butter (you may not need it all).
  10. Bake in the preheated oven for 12 to 15 minutes, until tops (and bottoms) are golden.
  11. Transfer the biscuits to a wire rack and cool for at least 5 minutes before serving.