Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Chicken-Fried-Steak Biscuits with Spicy Honey-Butter

This recipe is a variation on good ol' chicken-fried steak with biscuits and gravy.

Variation: There’s no gravy. And I used the biscuits like slider buns to make sandwiches out of the steaks. A buttery spread that’s a little bit sweet and a little bit spicy brings it all together.

Biggest tip for the biscuits: Don’t overwork the dough. I started the flour mixture in a food processor to help incorporate the butter and form a coarse meal texture. Be careful not to completely emulsify the butter pieces—small remaining bits will help keep the biscuits fluffy when baking.

If you don’t have a three-inch biscuit cutter, use another sturdy three-inch-diameter object—like the highball glass I used!

Makes 4 large biscuits


For the Biscuits
  • 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • 1-1/3 sticks cold, unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 3/4 cup cold buttermilk
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tbsp water
Butter Pieces
For the Steak and Honey-Butter
  • 2 tbsp clover honey
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp Tabasco (or other bottled hot sauce)
  • 1/4 tsp dried red chile flakes
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • all purpose flour, for dredging
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tbsp buttermilk
  • 4 4-oz cube steaks, pounded to tenderize
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • lettuce leaves and tomato slices, for serving (optional)
Cube Steaks
Pounded Cube Steaks

For the Biscuits
  1. Preheat the oven to 375° F. Line a shallow baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. Place the first 5 ingredients (through baking soda) in a food processor and pulse 2-3 times to combine.
  3. Add the butter pieces and use short pulses to cut into the flour mixture until a coarse meal forms, with a few small pieces of butter remaining. (Don’t overwork it.)
Pulsed Flour-Butter Mixture
  1. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and slowly mix in the buttermilk with a fork. Knead until a loose dough forms (the dough will be sticky).
  2. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and pat down until 1 inch thick. Use a 3-inch biscuit cutter (or other 3-inch-diameter object) to cut out the biscuits, rewrapping the scraps once. Place on the prepared baking pan.
  3. Whisk the egg yolk and water in a small bowl and brush the tops of the biscuits with the egg mixture.
Loose Dough 
Cut Out 3-Inch Dough Rounds
Yolk-Brushed Dough
  1. Bake until puffed and golden brown, 20-25 minutes.
Baked Biscuits
Baked Biscuits
For the Steak and Honey-Butter
  1. Combine the honey, butter, Tabasco, and chile flakes in a small bowl and season with salt and pepper. Mash with a fork until well incorporated and creamy.
Honey Mixture Ready to Blend
Spicy Honey Butter
  1. Place flour in a large baking dish or on a plate.
  2. Whisk together eggs and buttermilk in a shallow bowl.
  3. Season the steaks with salt and pepper. Working with 1 at a time, dredge the steak in flour, coating both sides, then dip in the egg mixture to coat. Dredge a second time in the flour mixture and dip a second time in the egg mixture.
  4. Place on a plate and repeat with the remaining 3 steaks.
  5. Heat a large, heavy skillet over medium heat and add the oil. Fry the steaks until golden brown and just cooked through, 3-4 minutes per side.
Steak Beginning to Fry 
Chicken-Fried Steak
To serve, split the biscuits and lay 1 steak on the bottom half of each. Spread the honey-butter mixture on the top halves and add desired toppings (if any). Close the biscuits and serve hot.

Split Biscuit
Chicken-Fried-Steak Biscuits with Spicy Honey-Butter

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