She said a triscuit a BISCUIT

Sorry about the title, I had to pay homage to one of the Tom Hanks’ classics, BIG. I promised you the recipe to the apple cheddar biscuits that I made with the meal from Wednesday’s post. Here it is as promised. I’ll give you a tip. If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, use one cup of regular milk with a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in it. Let it sit for ten minutes before use. You can actually use any type of vinegar or lemon juice to make the milk “sour” to a buttermilk like consistency. I did this for the first time because I did not have buttermilk on hand. In the future, I will continue to do this because I can never make use of the remaining buttermilk not used in the recipe. Let’s get right down to it…

Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small bits
1 ¼ cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (5 ounces)
1 apple, peeled, cored, and finely chopped
1 cup buttermilk

Directions

1. Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together with a fork.

2. Cut the butter into the flour mixture until the butter is the size of peas.

3. Mix in cheese, apple, and buttermilk until it is mixed. Do not overmix because it will make the biscuits tough. You want your biscuits to be light and delectable.

4. Scoop the biscuits onto a Silpat or greased parchment paper with an ice cream scoop or spoon. Be sure to make the biscuits the same size in order for the biscuits to bake equally.

5. Bake at 425 for about 15 minutes.

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The Holiest Time of the Year

We are smack dab in the middle of the High Holy days on the Jewish calendar.  For those of you less familiar with the Jewish calendar, the High Holy days are days from when Rosh Hashanah starts and ends with Yom Kippur.  If you had to pick one time of year to actually show up at Temple, this would be the moment.

There are some serious religious things that go one during this period (like the whole not eating thing on Yom Kippur), but there are also some great traditions.  Since this time period marks the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashanah is traditionally a time to send  cards to friends and family, similar to Christmas cards.  You are supposed to connect with the important people in your life and ask forgiveness for any transgressions that occurred in the past year.  It’s basically a time to clean your slate with your friends.  Then the period ends with Yom Kippur which is when you settle the score with the big guy and ask for forgiveness by making a personal sacrifice of not eating for 25 hours.

My favorite thing about Yom Kippur is the scene at Temple.  I’ve never been to an Easter  Mass, but I would guess it’s similar.  Instead of wearing your best spring dress however, on Yom Kippur you break out you best fall suit.  I typically go to my grand parents temple on Long Island, and those women know how to throw down.  Forget fall fashion week in Manhattan, these women at temple throw around labels like you would not believe.  I have never seen more red soled shoes in one room in my life.  Yom Kippur service is a place to see and be scene, and since you didn’t eat dinner last night, or breakfast that morning, might as well squeeze into that dress that’s have a size too small in real life.  When you’re stuck in a room for three hours and all you can think about is a bagel with cream cheese, it’s nice to have pretty things to look at.

The final great thing about these holidays is the traditional food.  Rosh Hashanah is all about apples and honey to wish a sweet new year.  It’s no coincidence that this is big flavor profile in the fall.  Here are some links to some great High Holy day dessert recipes to try!

Walnut Honey Cake from Martha (pictured above)

Apple Honey Challah from Smitten Kitchen

Apple and Honey Tarts from Tales of an Overtime Cook

Apple Chunk Oatmeal Cookies from Cook Kosher

Octoberfest Beer-Braised Chicken Thighs

Today I made dinner for the first time in months.  I must say that in the summer I am super busy and either pick something up for dinner or stop by my parents on the way home for a quick bite to eat.  Now that the fall has arrived, I am able to be back in the kitchen once again. I tried one of Rachel Ray’s recipes as I was inspired by the Octoberfest beer I had in the fridge.  I made a few of my own alterations to the recipe to make it my own.

Ingredients

8 pieces boneless, skinless chicken thighs seasoned with salt and pepper, 1 tbsp olive oil, 1 package of your favorite kielbasa, 1 chopped onion, 1 bulb fennel thinly sliced, 1 chopped red pepper, 3 cloves minced garlic, 1 tbsp thyme, 1 tbsp flour, 1 bottle Sam Adams Octoberfest beer, 1 14oz can diced tomatoes, 1 cup chicken stock, 2 tbsp hot sauce

Directions

1. Heat a dutch oven with one tbsp olive oil.  Then brown the chicken thighs in two batches.  Remove chicken thighs to a plate and then brown the kielbasa.

2.  Add the onion, fennel, pepper, garlic, and thyme and cook until the vegetables are softened (about 10 minutes).

3. Add the flour and cook for 1 to 2 minutes.  Then pour in the beer and let the foam subside.  Stir in the tomatoes, chicken stock, and hot sauce.  Let the sauce thicken and return the chicken to the dutch oven.  Simmer covered for 20 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.  Let the flavors meld and your meal is ready.

It’s an easy recipe and satisfyingly delicious!  I’ll give you the recipe for the apple cheddar buttermilk biscuits that I served along with it in my next post.  Happy Hump Day everyone!