Saturday, January 16, 2010

Biscuits, Vancouver Style

When I first moved to Vancouver, I was horrified by the cookie section of the grocery store. I was still rather addicted to Pepperridge Farms cookies that managed a soft, chewy texture, even though they were not kitchen fresh. My first visits to the cookie isle were marked with disgust: biscuits! Dry, crusty, barely sweet, barely edible biscuits!

I have since converted. This world needs biscuits. I need biscuits. They are good for lunch, with cheese and fruit, or for tea of course, or a midnight snack when you're writing way past bedtime.

I spent many mornings in Vancouver with a group of girls...The Breakfast Club. It had no connection whatsoever with the movie but with the more important breakfast. There I learned a thing or two. I learned that coffee softens the edges and loosens the tongue like any shot of tequila. I learned of Scottish oat cakes. I learned of biscuits. I can eat a biscuit for breakfast and still feel good. I cannot eat a cookie. Glory be to whole grain dry things. Glory.

These biscuits I made in a rush today during naps and between a hair appointment and bridesmaid dress excursion. The ones photographed here were the second batch baked and are a little dark for my liking. But this is a sign to you: the others were perfect and disappeared too quickly for me to get a shot!

Wholegrain Almond Biscuits

I cut out these cookies with a champagne glass, making small-ish 2 1/2 inch rounds. If you want a more cracker-sized biscuit, good for topping with cheese and fruit, then get out that big circle cutter! But be sure to adjust the baking time.

2/3 cup toasted almond meal
3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour, plus more for rolling
1/2 cup rolled oats, blended into flour in a food processor or blender
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup (1 stick) salted butter, cold and cut small
1 tablespoon cold water, plus more if needed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix flours, sugar, salt and cinnamon. Mix in butter with your fingers or pastry blender or food processor until butter is well distributed, but never creamy, like course meal or little peas. Add a few drops of water and toss with fingers again until mixture holds together when squeezed. Mash into a ball, cover, and let cool in fridge for about 30 minutes, or until cold but not rock hard. Roll out on a floured surface until 1/4 inch thick, and cut out into 2-3 inch rounds. Regather dough and repeat the process.Bake on an ungreased pan about 10 minutes or until biscuits are golden and toasty. Let cool five minutes on pan, then transfer to a cooling rack. Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. This is my first time on your blog and it is delightful! I love it, and love your style of writing. I will definitely subscribe!

    These biscuits look delish. Anything that combines butter, oats, and almonds sounds good by me.