My husband grew up in a variety of different states around America, due to a parent in the military. He proudly calls himself a southern boy in taste. Many of his favorite dishes are from down south. He's been pestering me for a year to make biscuits and gravy, and I've been resistant - mainly because I still struggle whenever making gravy, and it has never once come out the way it's supposed to! But I finally decided to try making this dish for him a couple weeks ago, and I was astounded by how simple it was. The gravy came out perfect and the biscuits were light and fluffy.
The first thing you have to do is make biscuits. If you really want to, you can buy ready-made biscuits in a can, but I find those cans rather insulting - it's almost like the companies are implying that their consumers are not capable of mixing a simple batter together. No ready-made biscuits in my house! And lets be honest, shall we? When you make it at home, you control the size and thickness of the final product, and those biscuits-in-a-can are never big enough.
So here is my recipe for buttermilk biscuits, modified from the original found on allrecipes.com:
4 cups all-purpose flour
4 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2/3 cup shortening
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Cut in shortening until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the buttermilk until moistened, and knead until the buttermilk is fully incorporated. Roll to 1/2 an inch thickness and use a mason jar ring as a biscuit cutter (this works perfectly because the ring is exactly 1/2 an inch thick, so you will know if your biscuit is too thin). Place on an ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 450 degrees F until golden brown (about ten minutes). Makes 20 thin biscuits or 15 nice thick ones.
While the biscuits are baking is the perfect time to start your gravy. I must admit the recipe I found on allrecipes is perfect, and I can't picture changing it in any way. Absolutely scrumptious!
1 lb. sausage
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups of milk
salt and pepper to taste
Crumble and cook sausage in large skillet over medium heat until browned. Stir in flour until dissolved (I put in a little at a time). Gradually stir in milk. Cook gravy until thick and bubbly. Season with salt and pepper. Serve hot over biscuits.
Every Saturday night we have a large group of people come over for gaming (my husband is a big Dungeons and Dragons fan). I usually cook for the group, and everyone chips in to help pay for the ingredients. Last night I made the biscuits and gravy - thirty biscuits and over four pounds of gravy. It was a hit, with people wandering back to the stovetop for seconds. This morning I took stock of the leftovers - we have two biscuits left, and no gravy whatsoever! You know a recipe was a winner when there aren't any leftovers.
Currently my three kids are arguing over who will get to eat the last of the biscuits - I may have to make another batch!