Wednesday, November 25, 2015

South Carolina Style Cream Cheese Biscuits instead of Rolls for the Holiday Dinner Table

So for the dinner of all dinners Thanksgiving day bread of some form is usually on the table. Crescent rolls from a can, bake and serve rolls or ,for the ambitious, homemade breads are some baked options that will bless many a Thanksgiving table.

However as a southerner I would like to say that while I love all those options biscuits will always be top on my list of bready things I love to eat. So for this holiday I will share this recipe for South Carolina Style cream cheese biscuits.

There are many many versions of these biscuits and recipes for them all over the web. Even the senator's office from the state has a version on their website. Why you ask? Well because at state functions his wife serves these little nuggets piled with thinly sliced onions and mayonnaise and chives or slathered with pimento cheese or warmed with salty ham and swiss cheese and a poppyseed mustard butter spread and they are so popular people ask for the recipe.

And while they are a perfect party food they are also just plain perfect served alongside a meal like the Thanksgiving feast. Served right out of the oven with good salted butter they can't be beat as a tasty side for the celebration.

So here's mt take on these tasty morsels. Hope you enjoy and have a blessed and happy Thanksgiving!!

South Carolina Style Cream Cheese Biscuits


  • 4 cups self-rising flour (preferably White Lily), plus more for dusting
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter cut in small cubes and at room temperature
  • ½ cup cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1½ cups buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter

  1. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees with rack in the middle position.
  2. Place 4 cups flour in a large, wide bowl.
  3. Sprinkle the butter cubes and the cream cheese on top of the flour and use your fingers to "cut" it in until the mixture resembles cottage cheese (chunky with some loose flour).
  4. Make a well in the center and pour the buttermilk in the well.
  5. Use your hands or a rubber spatula to mix the buttermilk into the flour. Don't overmix. The secret to tender biscuits is messing with the dough as little as possible. A wet and messy dough will form.
  6. Spread a good bit of flour out on a work surface. (I like to use a piece of parchment paper for my work surface.)
  7. Dump the dough onto the floured work surface. Flour a rolling pin and sprinkle flour on top of the dough.
  8. Roll the dough to ½-inch thickness. Do not knead the dough.
  9. Flour a 2-inch round biscuit cutter. Press the cutter straight down into the dough and straight back up. (No turning.) Repeat, cutting as many biscuits as you can.
  10. Roll out dough scraps one time to cut more biscuits. As long as the dough stays wet inside, you can use as much flour on the outside as you need. As I transfer the biscuits to a baking pan, I try to dust off any excess flour.
  11. Place biscuits on a baking pan with sides or a cast iron skillet. The sides of the biscuits should be touching. The recipe recommends lining the sides of the pan with parchment paper, but I did not.
  12. Brush the tops with melted butter. Place in oven and immediately reduce oven temp to 450 degrees. Bake 16 to 18 minutes, rotating the pan once.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Vermont Cheese Soup

On a recent visit to Vermont I was able to go to a cheese shop which specialized in Vermont cheeses. I also visited the Cabot Cheese outlet one of the largest cheese producers in the state. And I also had a cheese tasting course both at a very upscale restaurant as well as at my host's home during a dinner party.

Regardless of where I tried these cheeses it was evident that Vermont produces some incredible varieties. These were both being made in mass production facilities as well as in artisanal producers workshops. From the samples I had it was evident that this is excellent cheese.

So I recommend that you go to your local cheese monger and check out which of the really unique cheese offerings from Vermont they might have.

I also offer up a recipe for Vermont cheese soup I got in Vermont this weekend. It's a real cheese soup and is perfect for fall. Enjoy Ya'll.

Vermont Cheese Soup

3 cups of chicken stock
1 leek white part chopped
1 celery stalk chopped
1/2 of a medium onion chopped
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons cold water
1 cup packed shredded Vermont White sharp or better yet extra aged and sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 egg yolk
1/2 cup cream
1/4 cup dry white wine


Bring stock to boil and add vegetables
Simmer for 45 minutes
Then stain into a clean pot
mix the cornstarch with the water and stir into soup simmer till it's slightly thickened
Add the cheese slowly and keep stirring until the cheese is melted
Combine the egg yolk with the cream
Add about 3/4 cups of the warm liquid to the egg cream mixture and combine
Then add this mixture to the soup and stir rapidly with a whisk. Cook for two minutes.
Do not boil.
Just before serving add the wine. It does wonders for the taste of the cheese.