I generally feel as if I’m not where I’m supposed to be. It’s 2011 and I’m in southern California. Something’s up. Early 1960’s Georgia seems just about right.
Sweet tea and honey and firefly skies- it’s all so unadorned, so beautiful. I dream of wrap-around porches and peaches for days. I wish I could live in The Secret Life of Bees. For now, the closest I can get is in my kitchen. I make things like buttermilk biscuits and lemon curd and I close my eyes and feel the sticky air.
Of course three-tiered cakes and lavish pastries hold a mighty fine piece of my heart, but it’s always the simplest things that win me over. You can boast and brag all you want about your citrus dacquoise and your hazelnut praline, Mr. Fancy, but I’m sorry to say I’d rather a buttermilk biscuit. Is it safe to say that most of you would, too?
These are for those moments you spend wishing things were simpler. For those days you can’t stop thinking of Lily, Rosaline, August, and May.
These biscuits are golden and buttery, soft and flaky, and most importantly serve as a beautiful backdrop for some show-stopping lemon curd. Raise your hand if you agree that it’s super unfortunate that lemon curd is called lemon curd. Yeah, I know, I wish they picked a more attractive name, too. But please don’t let its title fool you- this lemon curd is arguably the best thing that’s ever come out of my kitchen.
From Honey and Jam
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup butter, plus more for coating tops
3/4 cup buttermilk
Attention! A recipe like this, with so few ingredients, reeeeally shines when you use good quality stuff. Ditch that pair of Louboutins you’ve been eyeing and splurge on some imported butter. It’s way worth it. Flour is key as well- King Arthur is where it’s at. I promise you won’t regret it.
Preheat oven to 450.
Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.
Cut in butter with a pastry blender until mixture resembles course crumbs with some pea-sized pieces. Add the buttermilk and stir with a fork until the dough comes together and is slightly sticky.
Place dough on a well floured work surface. Coat your hands in flour and knead gently 8 to 10 times, just until the dough holds together and is no longer sticky.
Gently pat dough into a 9 inch round at least 1/2 inch thick, and cut into circles with a biscuit cutter or the rim of a narrow glass.
Place biscuits 2 inch apart on an un greased cookie sheet. Brush tops with melted butter, and bake 10-12 minutes or until golden brown.
5 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons butter
3/4 cup superfine sugar
2 eggs + 2 egg yolks
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
In a heatproof bowl, whisk together all ingredients except butter. Place it over a small pot of simmering water, whisking constantly. When the mixture thickens to coat the back of a spoon, so that when you run your finger through it the finger stripe doesn’t disappear, take if off of the pot. Add the butter and whisk until it melts. Allow to cool slightly, then transfer to a clean glass jar, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until serving.
When life gives you lemons, make biscuits and curd.