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March 13, 2019

GARLIC AND HERBS BOURSIN BISCUITS

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If you never had the desire to make biscuits, these cheesy, herbaceous and garlicky Boursin Biscuits will make you reconsider. They are flaky, tender, and oh so good!

Garlic and Herbs Boursin Biscuits
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I don't eat biscuits regularly, but once in a while I get a hankering for a flaky and tender one. And when it has cheese, I'm happy! I love Boursin cheese spread. It is garlicky, herbaceous and is a fantastic addition to any bread. When I make biscuits from scratch, that's what I go for. This is not a sponsored post. I'm just a fan of the product and want you to be one as well!

While I am no biscuit expert, there are a few tips I have learned and would like to share with you. Let's start with the importance of measuring the flour accurately. Fluff it with a spoon prior to measuring and level off the measuring cup. Excess flour will produce dense, dry biscuits. 



Avoid overworking the dough. Biscuits should be flaky with light and tender crumbs. Overworked dough will activate the gluten in the flour and create a firm and chewy end product...great for crusty bread, not so great for biscuits.

Garlic and Herbs Boursin Biscuits

It is also important to keep the ingredients and tools cold. Freeze the mixing bowl, pastry cutter, and ingredients for at least 15 minutes prior to use. Cold butter is key to obtaining perfect biscuits. It creates steam pockets during baking, which produces flaky biscuits with tender crumbs. I go as far as washing my hands with cold water to prevent the dough from warming up as I handle it. 



My last tip: line the work surface with parchment paper when working the dough. It reduces stickiness and minimizes the tendency of adding too much flour, which has a drying effect. Using parchment is my personal preference to help with the light kneading and shaping of the dough. You may opt out if you wish.

Garlic and Herbs Boursin Biscuits

The biscuits are great with any meal—pork, chicken, or beef. I actually enjoy them as a snack. Because of the soft cheese, I prefer to store them in the refrigerator for freshness. They will firm up. To serve, pop the biscuits in the microwave for a few seconds or toaster oven for a few minutes. Adding a pat of butter won't hurt either. Then it's time to enjoy!





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GARLIC AND HERBS BOURSIN BISCUITS 

Garlic and Herbs Boursin Biscuits


INGREDIENTS:

2 cups all-purpose flour, minus 2 tablespoons
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoons salt
6 tablespoons cold butter, cut into cubes
1/3 cup Boursin Garlic & Fine Herbs
3/4 cup buttermilk
extra flour for dusting work surface




INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat  oven to 450 degrees F.

Combine flour, corn starch, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a mixing bowl. Add butter. Cut through using a pastry cutter until butter is the size of peas. Add Boursin cheese. Use two knives to cut through cheese until to incorporate it into the flour.

Add buttermilk, stirring with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula until dough starts to come together. Turn dough directly onto a lightly floured work surface or onto a large piece of parchment paper (the parchment paper reduces stickiness). Work dough together with cold hands, gathering up crumbs. Add a little flour if dough is too wet and sticky to work with.  Do not over work the dough. Flatten dough into a 3/4-inch thick rectangle and fold it into thirds. Repeat folding into a rectangle and folding into thirds 2 more times, adding flour to the work surface if needed to prevent sticking.

Flatten dough into 1/2 to 3/4-inch rectangle. Cut out biscuits by pushing a lightly dusted 3-inch biscuit cutter straight down the dough and up without twisting. Gather up scraps and flatten into 1/2 to 3/4-inch thickness. Cut out additional biscuits. Place onto a greased baking sheet, 1-inch apart. Brush the top with some buttermilk.

Bake for 12-15 or until lightly golden brown. For freshness, store refrigerated.

Makes 6 to 8 3-inch biscuits depending on the thickness of your biscuit dough.


Recipe Notes:

  1. Fluff four with a spoon prior to measuring and level off measuring cup for accuracy. Excess flour causes dry and dense biscuits. 
  2. Freeze ingredients, mixing bowl, and biscuits in for 15 minutes prior to use helps produce flaky biscuits. This step is optional but recommended.
  3. Wash hands with cold water to prevent dough from warming up while working with it.
  4. For softer edges, place biscuit dough touching each other in baking sheet.
  5. To reheat, microwave a few seconds or a few minutes in a toaster oven.




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February 27, 2019

PISTACHIO BROOKIE BARS

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When you bite into Pistachio Brookie Bars, you bite into fudgy chocolate brownies and delightful pistachio pudding cookies. Prepared with the help of packaged brownie mix, these semi-homemade treats come together with relative ease and rank high on satisfaction. 

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Although I have never taken a genealogical DNA test, I can say with 99.9% certainty that there is not one ounce of Irish ancestry in me. I'm Asian through and through. But on St. Patrick's Day, I'm going to be Irish at heart. 

One of my favorite things about St. Patrick's is the opportunity to eat corned beef and cabbage. I rarely make it throughout the year because half of the family are lukewarm on the meal. So, mid-March is my opportunity to get my share of the yummy dish! Om Nom Nom!!

February 13, 2019

CHICKEN AND SHRIMP MOZAMBIQUE WITH FRIED POTATOES

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Tender chicken, succulent shrimp, and crispy fried potato chunks served in a spicy, garlicky, buttery, and saffron infused Mozambique sauce is a sinfully delicious meal. Serve with crusty bread to sop up all the goodness, this Portuguese dish is what my dreams are made of!

Chicken and Shrimp Mozambique with Fried Potatoes
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The best place to experience good Portuguese/Azorean cooking is Southeastern Massachusetts. I have ties to the New Bedford, Fall River area of the state and make trips there regularly. One of the best things in this region, besides ocean fresh seafood, is the access to fantastic Portuguese food. Some of my favorite pulled pork sandwiches, bread, and desserts come from there.

I recently had one of the most satisfying meals at a Portuguese restaurant in New Bedford. After trying just one bite, I knew I had to recreate it at home. The dish was served in a Mozambique style sauce which is spicy, garlicky, buttery, and luscious! It had chunks of tender chicken and succulent shrimp. I have had both shrimp and chicken Mozambique at other restaurants, and while they were all very delicious, what sets this particular one apart was the addition of crispy fried potatoes chunks! I had the meal with Portuguese rolls to sop up all luxurious sauce. It was divine!!!

February 04, 2019

MOLTEN CHOCOLATE HAZELNUT STRAWBERRY MUG CAKE FOR TWO

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Less than two minutes to cook, chocolate mug cake is one of life's simple pleasures. With a molten center of chocolate-hazelnut-strawberry spread, this one is a treat! If you have never tried mug cakes, now is the time! Plus, this version requires no egg and no dairy!

Molten Chocolate Hazelnut Strawberry Mug Cake For Two
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Mug cake has been around for a number of years. I tried to Google its origin but was unsuccessful at determining when it was introduced to the public. After some research, I concluded that mug cake wove its way into the mainstream consciousness around 2012-2013. If anyone wants to take the time to fact check me, please do and let me know...because I'm curious!

Whoever came up with the idea, a big thank you! Mug cakes literally allows me to have my cake and eat it too! I can have a cake craving and be eating a homemade one in five minutes. All the ingredients are mixed and cooked in a cup, and it take less than two minutes to microwave.