Makes 11 sandwiches
A baker friend taught me to grate frozen butter for biscuits and pie crusts, which spreads the fat throughout the dough so you never have to cut it in. That’s the way many southern cooks make ham biscuits using self-rising flour. After baking, the rounds are filled with ham. These, made with all-purpose flour, leavening, and buttermilk, are sandwiched with smoked turkey and arugula, and spread with mustard-mayo, so you get smoky, sweet, spicy, and buttery tastes. Biscuit recipes, like pie crust formulas, have pretty standard proportions; the secret to a light, flaky crumb is handling the dough as little as possible. A 2-inch cutter will make 11 biscuits with rerolled scraps. You can make them smaller, but they’ll look like they belong on a tea party tray instead of a Super Bowl spread.
|Butter (for the pan)|
|1||teaspoon baking powder|
|1||teaspoon baking soda|
|½||cup (1 stick) butter, frozen solid|
|1||cup buttermilk (you may not need it all)|
|Extra flour (for sprinkling)|
1. Set the oven at 450 degrees. Line a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with parchment paper. Butter the paper. Have on hand a 2-inch plain round cookie cutter.
2. In a bowl with a fork, stir the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt to blend them.
3. Remove the butter from the freezer.
Unwrap it and use the paper to hold it at one end. Set a grater with large holes over a piece of parchment paper; grate the butter onto the paper. Stir it into the flour mixture.
4. Add ½ cup of the buttermilk and stir well with the fork. Add ¼ cup more buttermilk and stir to form large, moist clumps. Add more buttermilk, 1 tablespoon at a time,
until there are no dry patches at the bottom of the bowl.
5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter. Sprinkle with flour and use a bench scraper or blunt knife to cut through the clumps half a dozen times until it comes together to form a dough.
6. Sprinkle the counter and a rolling pin with flour. Roll the dough to a ½-inch thickness. Dipping the cutter often in flour, stamp out rounds as close as possible. Reshape and reroll the scraps. You should have 11 biscuits.
7. Set the rounds 3 across in the baking pan — it will be a tight fit — making 4 rows total.
8. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the biscuits are golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.
|1||tablespoon Dijon mustard|
|11||thin slices smoked turkey breast|
|2||cups baby arugula|
1. In a bowl, whisk the mayonnaise and mustard.
2. Holding fork tines parallel to the table, insert them into the biscuits all around the edge, splitting them the way you split English muffins. Spread the cut sides with the mayonnaise mixture. Add a slice of turkey to the bottom pieces, folding the slices so they fit neatly. Add arugula and set on the tops. Sheryl Julian