Summertime is fast approaching and for Alaskans that means seafood.
The weekend warriors have already started arriving with their tents and poles, hoping to catch a big one for their dinner table. The big fishing vessels are being painted and repaired before the true season begins, and the crews are being assembled. Businesses all over the peninsula are preparing for another busy tourist season. Around here, it seems that everything revolves around fish.
Our family is very busy right now preparing for the fishing season, so when we get the opportunity to sneak in some quality time, we make the most of it.
My son got some playtime with his cousins on Saturday night, and we had a shrimp boil dinner out on the lawn with some of the favorite seafood side dishes: corn on the cob, homemade tartar and hot sauce (plus a spicy Korean sauce because I couldn’t help myself) and the always popular cheddar biscuits.
For a lot of the country, those cheddar biscuits go hand in hand with seafood because of the popularity of a certain chain seafood restaurant. I worked a second job as a server in one for six months or so. People loved those biscuits more than anything else and would often ask if they could have the recipe.
I wasn’t allowed to give guests my copycat recipe then, and I don’t know the actual recipe (they send the biscuit mix pre-made), but I think my recipe comes close and I’d love to share it with you all.
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and chilled
4 ounces shredded cheddar cheese
2 ounces shredded Parmesan
½ cup chopped chives
1 cup whole or 2% milk
1⁄3 cup plain Greek yogurt
Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.
Sift together your flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl and set aside.
Combine your butter and flour mixture, using your fingertips to keep the butter as cold as possible, until the mixture resembles cornmeal. It’s important that the dough remains cold. If it takes a long time to incorporate the butter (more than 5 minutes) you should put the mixture into the freezer for 10 minutes before continuing.
Mix your cheese and chives into the flour.
Stir the yogurt and milk together until smooth.
Combine the wet and dry ingredients very gently. Do not over mix or you will have tough biscuits. You want to mix just until all there are no pockets of dry flour.
Take two spoons and scoop out your biscuits like cookie dough. Each biscuit should be about ¼ cup of dough. An ice cream scoop (especially the spring-loaded kind) works well for this.
Bake for 14 minutes, rotating the pan halfway, and serve warm.
These biscuits are great to bake in advance and pack along for fishing and camping trips. They are also delicious sliced in half and toasted for a breakfast sandwich (an unfortunately common breakfast for me at that time).
A word of caution from experience: Enjoy responsibly and don’t overdo it because these tasty guys pack a lot of calories and fat. They are best served with a side of fresh air, exercise and, hopefully, your fresh catch.