Baking by ratio is simply keeping your ingredients to a specified ratio thus ensuring consistent results when following the recipe. How many times have your tried a recipe that sounds & looks terrific only to find your own end-result to be much less than desirable?? I have – - – far too many times than I would like to admit. Especially once I started baking gluten free… it is a whole new baking world! Ratios are your answer to consistent success! And who has money to throw botched recipes away? Some botchings are just NOT redeemable…
This month’s ratio rally features biscuits and is hosted by Gretchen at www.kumquatblog.com/2012/01/gluten-free-ratio-rally-sweet.html. I discovered something new about Gretchen this month… her dear husband serves in the US Military! Gretchen, please extend our gratitude to your husband for his service to our country!!! And as a retired-military wife I know full well YOUR OWN sacrifice for our country. Thank you so much for your service as well!
This brief interlude was made possible by the sacrifice of the men and women of the finest military in the world – The United States Armed Forces. God bless you and protect you!
Now on to the recipes…
Biscuits… I have always loved those baked beauties. When we lived in Florida I used to get cinnamon raisin biscuits at Hardee’s. Then there are the cheese biscuits at Red Lobster, the standard biscuits served everywhere in the south, biscuit topping for cobblers, and my favorite… sausage biscuits! Yes, you could ruin it with an egg… but I like mine straight. I never had a problem making really good biscuits… until I had to eat gluten free. Sigh. I miss tall, flaky, tender biscuits… split open and topped with butter and jam…
I have baked numerous batches of biscuits this past month with varying degrees of success. My first batch turned out well but spread too much and looked like… well cookies with cracked tops. Hm. Another batch tasted rice-y and were doughy/gummy after baking… flour ratio bomb to be sure! A previous batch looked great but crumbled apart when I tried slicing them to make Sausage Biscuits out of them. Sigh. Is this really THAT hard…? Prior to this rally I did fine with biscuits, even the gluten free ones… well as long as I made them drop style. One day I hope to find the secret to cut out biscuits that will rise up tall! I know they will never be as tall as a gluten biscuit… but can I have a little height… please?
OK, back to the drawing board!
Biscuits lessons learned… I have discovered that:
* too high a percentage of starchy flours will result in a gummy biscuit.
* if you use rice flour (whole grain) AND sweet rice flour (starch) as the major portion of the biscuit mix it will result in a rice flavored biscuit.
* if you use too much shortening your biscuits will spread too much. (just like cookies)
* not enough starchy flours will result in a v-e-r-y crumbly biscuit.
* if I wanted to use my “whole grain flour mix” I needed to add some more starchy flour to balance out the whole grain for a biscuit you can slice AND won’t fall apart while trying to eat it.
So I fell back to my standard drop style biscuit… with a little twist.
I started out by using a whole grain blend we all have really liked the flavor of.
Aunt Mae’s Whole Grain GF Flour Blend
thanks to the gluten free girl for the blending guidelines
132 grams millet flour
206 grams certified gf oat flour
462 grams brown rice flour
105 grams quinoa flour
60 grams garbanzo bean flour
35 grams brown teff flour
388 grams tapioca flour
214 grams sweet rice flour
Measure each flour out into a large airtight container. Place lid on, make sure it is secure and shake to mix well. For those of you who live near enough to a Costco business center, they have some very large (6 qt I think, they are the ones with the red lids), square plastic containers that are perfect for mixing a large quantity of a gluten free flour blend into… and storing it there if you like.
This is my second batch of this basic blend. We have loved it in pancakes, waffles, biscuits, and I plan to use it in much more!
But after a month of rolled & cut biscuit results that were not what I was looking for… what should I make for the ratio rally??? Hm, I do have some turkey leftover from our New Year’s Eve dinner. Hey!! I know!! I can make a Turkey Pot Pie with an Herb Biscuit Topping!!
And I did.
Everyone loved it. Phew.
The basis for the pot pie recipe was this one from Silvana Nardone.
I like to think of this as… are you ready for this?
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Have 1 – 2 quart baking dish ready.
2 – 4 tablespoons coconut oil, melted in large skillet over medium to medium low heat. Make sure you get the pan hot BEFORE you add the oil, let the oil melt and heat BEFORE you add the vegetables. (Why a hot pan? See Here!)
1 medium onion, diced small (for dicing help go here)
2 stalks celery, sliced
1/2 of 1 large carrot, washed and shredded (or diced)
4 ounces sliced mushrooms
1 teaspoon summer savory
1 – 2 cups leftover, cooked green beans
2 cups cubed, cooked turkey
2 cups leftover turkey gravy
FOR HERB BISCUIT TOPPING:
Place stand mixer bowl onto scale. Weigh all ingredients right into bowl!
4 ounces butter, earth balance, or shortening
8 ounces Aunt Mae’s Whole Grain GF Flour Blend
3 1/2 ounces tapioca flour
1/2 ounce non-GMO corn starch
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 ounces (by weight) milk, coconut milk beverage, or other non-dairy milk.
Saute onion, celery, carrot and mushrooms in coconut oil.
While vegetables are cooking prepare the herb biscuit topping.
Weigh out the fat into your stand mixer bowl. Zero out the scale and weight out the flours. Add in baking powder and salt. Using the stand mixer paddle, ‘cut in’ the shortening until it resembles small peas. They do not need to be uniform in size.
Next, pour in part of the liquid and start mixing. You want the dough to form a ball around the paddle. You may need more or less liquid depending on you humidity and flour mixture. I seem to have consistently needed a little less than the full 8 ounces.
Take about 1/3 of the dough and place into a separate bowl. Add 1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon poultry seasoning or to taste to the 1/3 portion and mix in well. Set aside.
When onion is translucent sprinkle with summer savory and stir to incorporate throughout dish. Add green beans, turkey gravy and diced turkey. Stir to combine. Heat completely. If dry, add some water to make a thick bubbling gravy. Transfer to baking dish.
Drop the herb biscuit dough by medium scoops or tablespoons onto the top of the hot turkey & vegetable filling. Put into hot oven and bake at 425 degrees for 25 – 30 minutes.
With the remaining biscuit dough, scoop out onto a freezer safe plate. I use a large scoop. Place plate of dough balls into freezer and freeze until hard. Place frozen biscuit dough balls into a plastic bag or airtight container. Bake frozen biscuits in a 450 degree pre-heated oven for 25 – 30 minutes. You can bake as few or as many as you need.
Serve immediately. Serves 4.
The moment I knew we were featuring biscuits on the Ratio Rally I KNEW I needed to find a version of this song to post here for y’all to enjoy!! If you want to SEE this performed by the Sons of the Pioneers you will have to get the Roy Rodgers DVD “King of the Cowboys”. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-Aa864J1is&version=3&hl=en_US]
Here is a listing of all the other participants in this month’s rally and the links to their biscuit creations!
Amanda | Gluten Free Maui – Classic Biscuits and Gravy - http://www.glutenfreemaui.com/?p=1225
Amie Valpone | The Healthy Apple – Gluten-Free Wasabi Parsley Biscuits - http://wp.me/p1k0fh-3iJ
Caleigh | Gluten Free[k] – American Style Biscuits - http://gluten-freek.blogspot.com/2012/01/not-biscuits-but-biscuits.html
Caneel | Mama Me Gluten Free – Whole Grain Pecan Drop Biscuits - http://mamameglutenfree.blogspot.com/2012/01/whole-grain-pecan-drop-biscuits.html
Charissa | Zest Bakery - Egg Nog Biscuits with Freshly Grated Nutmeg - http://www.zestbakery.com/drink/cold/eggnog/eggnog-biscuits-with-grated-nutmeg/
Erin Swing | The Sensitive Epicure - Scallion Biscuits with Sausage Gravy – http://thesensitiveepicure.blogspot.com/2012/01/scallion-biscuits-with-sausage-gravy.html
gretchen | kumquat – sweet buttermilk biscuits – www.kumquatblog.com/2012/01/gluten-free-ratio-rally-sweet.html
Heather | Discovering the Extraordinary – Almond Coconut Tea Biscuits – http://www.discoveringtheextraordinary.blogspot.com/2012/01/almond-coconut-tea-biscuits.html
Jean | Gluten-Free Doctor Recipes - Jammers – http://www.gfdoctorrecipes.com/recipes/jammers-were-jammin.html
Jonathan | The Canary Files – Vegan Sesame Shiso Biscuits – http://thecanaryfiles.blogspot.com/2012/01/ratio-rally-vegan-sesame-shiso-biscuits.html
Karen | Cooking Gluten Free! – Biscuit Template with Dairy Free Substitutions – http://cookingglutenfree.com/2012/01/biscuit-template-with-dairy-free-substitutions/
Lisa | Gluten Free Canteen – Fluffy Biscuits, Gluten Free – http://glutenfreecanteen.com/2012/01/01/fluffy-biscuits-gluten-free/
Mary Fran | FrannyCakes – Gluten-Free Espresso Orange Biscuits – http://frannycakes.com/recipes/gf-ratio-rally-biscuits/
Mrs. R | Honey From Flinty Rocks – Turkey Pot Pie with Biscuit Topping – Gobbler Cobbler lol – http://honeyfromflintyrocks.wordpress.com/2012/01/04/turkey-pot-pie-with-herb-biscuit-topping
Rachel/ The Crispy Cook – Hummus in a Biscuit - http://wheat-free-meat-free.blogspot.com/2012/01/hummus-in-a-biscuit.html
Silvana Nardone | Silvana’s Kitchen – Gluten-Free Sausage-n-Cheddar Bialy Biscuits – http://silvanaskitchen.com/2012/01/gluten-free-sausage-n-cheddar-bialy-biscuits
TR | No Ones Likes Crumbley Cookies – Lemon Basil Biscuits – http://tcrumbley.blogspot.com/2012/01/gluten-free-biscuits.html
Ya know what? I love poetry. Oh, I think I may have told you that before… one time or another. And w-a-y back in this blog I told you about my favorite cookbook, my 1963 hardback copy of ‘Joy of Cooking’. Did you know there is poetry in there? Yup. My version has poetry! That is not why it is my favorite cookbook, but it is the icing in top!!
The poem in the cookbook is about biscuits. No really it is! Honest! This poem was my also first introduction to the Reformed faith. I loved this poem so much I went searching for the whole book. What an absolute treasure!! Oh, you want the poem and title of the book? Are you sure? OK.
Bandanna Ballads by (Maria) Howard Weeden
Of course I’ll gladly give de rule
I meks beat biscuit by,
Dough I ain’t sure say you will mek
Dat break de same as I.
‘Case cookin’s like religion is–
Some’s ‘lected, an’some ain’t
An’ rules don’t no more mek a cook
Den sermons mek a Saint.
Well, ’bout de ‘grediances required
I needn’t mention dem,
Of couse you knows of flour and things,
How much to put, an’ when;
But soon as you is got dat dough
Mixed up all smoove an’ neat,
Den’s whenyour genius gwine to show,
To get dem biscuit beat!
Two hundred licks is what I gives
For home-folks never fewer,
An’ if I’m ‘spectin’ company in,
I gives five hundred sure!
Blessings, ~Mrs. R (aka Aunt Mae)