I’ve been baking quite a lot of cakes and other sweets the last couple of weeks so these savoury little things seemed like just the thing to break away from it all and stop singlehandedly depleting the world’s supply of sugar.
Having never made savoury scones, or biscuits as they are more commonly known in the United States, I was quite intrigued by the whole folding, rolling and turning process the recipe calls for which i think is similar to how puff pastry is made. As it turns out, it was a rather nice way to spend a gloomy afternoon, rolling and cutting out the dough- and occasionally yelling at Coco to get off the floor and back onto his perch.
I had to add slightly more than 3/4 cups of flour to get the dough pliable- i’ve adapted the recipe below to reflect that- and even then, had to keep adding more flour to stop the dough from sticking everywhere. I might add an entire cup of flour the next time round which might help make the whole rolling out, folding and turning of the dough a lot less messy the next time.
Still, these biscuits turned out really well. They didn’t come out looking half as flaky as the ones in the picture in the book did. But they tasted just as good as i imagine they would be; slightly crusty and golden brown on top, tender and flaky inside with a subtle hint of cream cheese and chives.
Cream Cheese and Chives Biscuits [adapted from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook]
120g cold butter, cut into cubes
120g cold cream cheese, cut into cubes
1 1/4 cup milk
3 1/4 cups plain flour
1 1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup finely chopped chives
1 tbsp castor sugar
- Combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, sugar, salt and chives in a medium bowl. Add the cream cheese and butter in and using a bench scraper, cut the cream cheese and butter into the flour mixture till the mixture is throughly mixed with some coarse crumbs.
- Pour the milk into the flour mixture and using a fork, mix the mixture till the dough just comes together. Scrap the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the dough out to a 12cm x 18cm rectangle, with the shorter side facing you. Fold the top one-third of the dough towards you and the bottom one-third upwards. Give the dough a quarter turn, roll it out again to the same dimensions and repeat the folding process. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and put it in the fridge for an hour.
- Roll the dough out and fold it the same way as before twice before rolling the dough out to about 1″ thick. Using a 3″ cookie cutter, cut the dough out and place the biscuits on a lined baking tray. Refrigerate the biscuits for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 210C and bake the biscuits for about 15 minutes or till the biscuits are lightly browned. Serve biscuits warm.