buttermilk biscuits with parsley + sage + an ode to joanne chang


You may have noticed that I’ve been kind of addicted to Joanne Chang’s Flour: Spectacular Recipes from Boston’s Flour Bakery + Cafe. I first encountered the famed owner of Flour Bakery + Café this summer when my editor sent me her sequel, Flour, Too, for review. Not only was I enamored by a woman who made a radical career change, making the radical leap from management consultant to baker, but the glee she imbues within each recipe — as if she’s rediscovering pastry and cookies and biscuits for the first time — was infectious. You wanted to say yes to Joanne, regardless of what she was hocking.

1112p95-flour-cookbook-lNever did I think that I could adore a cookbook as much as I did Flour, Too, but Flour is truly remarkable. For those of you reading this space, you know I’ve just come off the gastronomic blitzkrieg that was the Kinfolk affair, replete with failed recipes and practiced humility, so I needed to return to recipes I could trust, recipes made with a practiced hand and acute sensibility. So when I saw Flour in my local bookstore, I thumbed through the pages and then ran to the register.

It should be noted that I haven’t been this in love with a cookbook since Karen DeMasco’s The Craft of Baking {if you don’t own this book, you should}. Not only will you find your classic cookies and crumbles and cakes, you’ll encounter some delicious delights {homemade oreos and fig newtons, milky way tarts, and chocolate filled brioche}. The instructions are clear, meticulous and exacting, and I haven’t made one dessert out of this book which wasn’t a tremendous success.

These biscuits? I plan to ambush my friend at yoga with a bag of these, since my bounty is starting to pile up. Ah, the days of office life when you can pile up goods in the kitchen and run.

INGREDIENTS: Adapted from Joanne Chang’s Flour: Spectacular Recipes from Boston’s Flour Bakery + Cafe
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 8 to 10 pieces, plus 2 tablespoons, melted
1/2 cup cold nonfat buttermilk
1/2 cup cold heavy cream
1 cold egg
1 tbsp finely chopped sage
1 tbsp chopped parsley

Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350ºF.

In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt on low speed for 10 to 15 seconds, or until combined. Scatter the cold butter pieces over the top and mix on medium-low speed for about 1 minute, or until the butter is broken down and the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

In a small bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, cream, egg, and sage until well combined. With the stand mixer on low speed, pour the buttermilk mixture into the flour mixture. Mix for 10 to 15 seconds, or just until the dough comes together. (There will still be some loose dry ingredients at the bottom of the bowl.)

Unscrew the bowl from the stand mixer. Using your hands, gather the dough together and turn it over in the bowl so that it picks up the loose dry ingredients. Turn the dough a few more times, until all of the dry ingredients are mixed in.

Dump the dough onto a lightly floured work surface and pat it into a 1-inch-thick round. Using a 3-inch round biscuit or cookie cutter, cut out biscuits and place them on a baking sheet. Gently recombine the dough scraps, pat into another 1-inch-thick round, and cut out more biscuits. (Repeat if necessary; you should have 8 biscuits total. At this point, the biscuits can be tightly wrapped in plastic wrap and frozen for up to 1 week.)

Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until the biscuits are entirely golden brown. (If baking frozen biscuits, add 5 to 10 minutes to the baking time.) Remove, place the pan on a wire rack, and let cool. In a small bowl, mix together the melted butter and parsley. Brush the tops of the biscuits with the butter while they are still warm.


Book interior image credit: Cooking Light.

11 thoughts on “buttermilk biscuits with parsley + sage + an ode to joanne chang

  1. I purchased Flour this morning via Kindle and am now DYING to bake everything in it!

    I am inspired by her move to completely change careers even if it took me 25 years to figure out what she figured out in 2!

    Thanks for highlighting her book!


      1. I am reserving time next weekend for Brioche au Chocolat, starting Friday night. I have a friend that I just started attending a Sunday morning yoga class that has been so supportive of me, and I would just love to surprise her with these! I love that you made the brioche! Heading over to check yours out now.


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