Spiced Cherry Biscuits
We've made a lot of savory biscuits, but a sweet variety is always welcome. Spiced raisin biscuits are popular, but not everyone likes a raisin. Our chef's best friend calls them, "humiliated grapes." So, in honor of those who can't stand a good raisin, we're using some sun-dried cherries instead. The tart-sweet cherries are combined in a lightly sweet fluffy biscuit with hints of cardamom, cinnamon and a subtly kiss of orange. Now, these are some pretty delicious biscuits! Serve them warm with a drizzle of chocolate icing, melted chocolate or caramel sauce for a rich delicious dessert or extra special breakfast. If you want to use raisins instead of the cherries, we still love you. Your customers are going to love these!
Procedure: Biscuit Method
Scale and measure all ingredients.
Sift the dry ingredients together into a large mixing bowl.
Cut the shorting or butter into the dry ingredient mixture using the paddle attachment. If the batch is smaller, you can cut the fat into the dry mixture by hand using your fingers or a pastry blender. Mix until the combination looks like a course cornmeal.
Add the liquid to the dry ingredients, mixing only until combined. DO NOT overmix.
Bring the dough to the bench and knead lightly on a floured surface. Rotate the dough 90 degrees between folds.
Knead 10-15 times for about 30 seconds. Dough should be slightly elastic and soft.
Note: Using slightly more shortening and cutting it in less produces a flakier biscuit. Omitting the kneading step produces very tender biscuits with less volume.
The Makeup of Biscuits
Scaling: Approx 1 lb (450g) per dozen 2- inch (5 cm) biscuits.
Roll out the dough on a lightly floured bench or work-surface in a rectangle, about ½ inch thick. Make sure to roll to a uniform thickness.
Cut into desired shape. With a round cutter, be sure to cut straight down and not twist the cutter. Keep the cuts as close together as possible to eliminate waste and scraps, as reworked scrap dough produces tougher biscuits over time. Some bakers prefer cutting into squares, as this will reduce, if not eliminate, scraps.
Place biscuits ½ inch (1cm) apart on parchment lined or greased baking sheet. For soft biscuits without crusting sides, make sure to arrange them where they almost touch each other on the pan.
Brush the tops of biscuits with melted butter, milk or egg wash to aid in browning if desired.
For best volume, bake as soon as possible.
Baking: 425°F (218°C) about 12-15 minutes
Finishing: Glaze with melted dark chocolate or chocolate icing if desired.
Want to make them at home?
Spiced Cherry Biscuits
yield 8 large or 16 small
2 cups all purpose 1/2 cup butter or organic vegetable shortening
1/2 tsp salt
5 Tbsp sugar
5 teaspoons baking powder
1/8 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp orange zest
1/2 cup dried cherries, chopped
Wet ingredients: 1 cup milk or buttermilk Directions:
Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.
In a half-gallon sized bowl, combine the shortening or butter with the dry ingredients. Mix until the shortening has been cut into tiny pieces, the size of a pea.
Add milk or buttermilk them to the flour/shortening mixture. Mix very gingerly until a light dough is formed.
Knead the dough 4-5 times, then roll out on an floured counter top 1 inch thick.
Cut into biscuits.
Place on ungreased baking sheet and bake 15-20 minutes.
Finishing: Drizzle with melted dark chocolate or chocolate frosting if desired. Serve warm.