Creating a blog was out of the question for a long time for me, as measuring everything in the kitchen was like biting into an eggshell. I enjoy cooking and don’t want to waste even a slightest bit of enjoyment in that small world of mine. But little did I know that everything will change, when my husband came home with the Oscar nominated film ‘Julie and Julia’( a real life story) where Julie Powell (part played by Amy Adams) challenged herself to make all the 524 recipes from Julia Child's cook book ‘Mastering the Art of French Cooking’ and blogging all her experiences (The Julie/Julia Project). It was an inspiring movie. A few days later when we were discussing this casually with a friend of ours over tea…everything changed dramatically…..” How about you making at least half of it in one year? Not French but your own. 262 recipes that will inspire others and present it as a blog?” For a minute my mind traveled faster than light… With an experience as a helper in my mother in laws kitchen for 6 years followed by a three year everyday struggle to satisfy the palate of my foodie husband, if I cannot do it then why should I cook? But on the other side with an experience in English literature extending no more than expanding outline stories in English grammar class when I was 18 and two small kids that come in handy at times, will a commitment for the next one year work? Anyway my ‘cook's ego’ didn’t allow me to say no...

So my friends …here I am opening my recipe book, trying to perfect and present 262 recipes in the coming 365 days….A Challenge that will of course tastes good. Come.. Have a walk with me along my journey.. Cheering and inspiring….Forgiving and tolerating…Testing and tasting….for ‘A Tasty Challenge’

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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Biscuits and Gravy

Recipe No:91
The Biscuit part of this recipe is adapted from food Network’s Paula Deen  with very minimum modifications. It is a very easy recipe if you follow the directions. Please make sure to read the ‘notes’ before making attempts. Gravy part is also very easy and  it can be made with or without Sausage... Either way it goes well with Biscuits. So here goes the American style Biscuits…
Biscuits


Ingredients                                         Makes 8 big ones
  • Flour………………………...2 Cups
  • Sugar………………………..2 Teaspoon
  • Baking Powder…………..1 Tablespoon
  • Baking Soda……………....1/2 Teaspoon
  • Salt…………………………..3/4 teaspoon
  • Cold Butter………………..8 Tablespoons
  • Cold Milk……………….….3/4 Cup
  • Egg…………………………..1
  • Water…………………….…1 Tablespoon
  • Pepper Powder………....As per needed
Method of Preparation
  1. Preheat the oven to 425˚F/ 218˚C
  2. Mix together Flour, Baking Powder, Baking Soda, Sugar and Salt; mix really well.
  3. Chop cold Butter into small pieces and gently mix into the flour until it makes a  coarse consistency. Small pieces of Butter should be present in the flour at this stage. If you are using a food processor this will be achieved in a few pulses and if you are using a stand mixer, mix it for two minutes or until butter forms the size of Peas.
  4. Add cold Milk and mix lightly till a dough is formed.
  5. video
  6. Dump this into a well floured board and pat the dough together into 1 inch thick disc. Don’t knead the dough.
  7. Cut the Biscuits using a round cutter of desired diameter and place them on a buttered baking sheet. Chill this for 10 minutes.
  8. Beat Egg and Water together (This is egg wash) and brush the top of the Biscuits with the egg wash and sprinkle some coarsely ground Pepper  on top.
  9. Bake for 14-16 minutes in the middle rack of the oven  until the Biscuits achieve a light brown color on top.
Notes:
  • It is very important that the butter is cold in this recipe and it should be crumbly and not melted into the dough so that when the heat hits the cold butter it melts and the steam will make the Biscuits puff up. This is the same reason why you shouldn't knead the dough, for if you knead the heat of our palm will melt the Butter.
  • You can use Red Chilly Powder to sprinkle the top of the Biscuits instead of Pepper Powder.
  • The leftover Biscuits can be used to make sandwiches.
Sausage Gravy 
Ingredients                                       Makes 1 1/2 Cups
  • Spicy Italian Sausage......….1 (Uncooked is the best)
  • All Purpose Flour…………....1 ½ Tablespoons
  • Milk……………………………....1 ½ Cups
  • Oil…………………………………1 Tablespoon
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
Method of Preparation
  1. Heat Oil in a pan on medium heat and add the sausage meat that is taken out of the casing.
  2. Try to separate the meat as much as possible using a spoon and fry it in the oil till slightly brown.
  3. Reduce the temperature to medium low and sprinkle the Flour on top and fry it for two minutes or till the raw smell of the Flour is gone.
  4. Add the Milk and mix well without any lumps. Let it start to simmer along the edges. Add Salt and Pepper to taste.
  5. Serve it hot on top of Biscuits.
Notes:
  • Its very important to fry the flour well in the oil or the gravy will taste like raw flour.
  • If you don't eat Sausage then start by frying Flour in Oil  (1 1/2 tablespoons of Oil and   1 1/2 tablespoons of Flour)and then add the milk and the rest of the procedure is same as that of the Sausage gravy.
  • Raw Sausage is available in the fresh meat section of your grocery store.





Make it, enjoy the deliciousness and
serve it to your family with love…

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