I could eat breakfast food for every meal and be the happiest of campers. Songs of joy would emanate from my metaphorical tent. And one of my favorite dishes is a big ole plate of biscuits smothered in gravy.
Fortunately for me, and unfortunately for my wallet, I live about 15 minutes from both Chicago Diner (“meat-free since ’83″) locations, which serve up some magically delicious brunch items all week long — including to-die-for biscuits and gravy.
From the lovely pages (27 to be precise) of their cook book comes this biscuit recipe, which I quartered to make five biscuits instead of 20.
I know what you’re thinking and, sure, I could have frozen the leftovers. But would I have? Or would I have eaten all 20 and then fallen into a lengthy food coma? I think we all know the answer.
Anyway, for those of you with self control, here’s the recipe for all 20 glorious biscuits. One change: I used whole wheat flour versus standard unbleached because I am a damn rebel.
- 5 cups unbleached flour (I used whole wheat)
- 1 1/2 Tbsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 11/2 sticks vegan butter (or 12 Tbsps. I did the math. You’re welcome).
- 2 1/2 cups soy or almond milk
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice or white vinegar
Disco whole wheat biscuits
- Preheat your oven to 425.
- Mix together your three dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl, then stir in the butter with a fork until there are little clumps.
- Add the milk, lemon juice (or vinegar) and stir until you have a knead-able lump of dough.
- Plop your dough lump onto a floured cutting board or counter, and knead it for one or two minutes, until the dough is smooth.
- With a rolling pin (or wine bottle), roll the dough out until it’s a half-inch thick.
- Use a cookie or biscuit cutter (or juice glass, if you’re me) to cut out your biscuits.
- Place the biscuits on a cookie sheet covered in parchment paper, and pop them in the oven for 12 to 15 minutes.
- You’ll probably have a little bit of dough leftover. Mold that into a biscuit-like shape, and include it on the cookie sheet with its more attractive brethren. Also, name it something cute so it feels better about itself. I recommend Scooter.
- When they’re all done, place the little guys in a bowl, and cover them with a towel to keep them warm.
For the gravy, I used this out-of-sight and too good to be true recipe from the Vegan Fusion cookbook, with a few alterations, including that I once again used whole wheat instead of unbleached flour. Like I said — damn rebel. This makes four cups.
- 4 Tbsp unbleached flour (I used whole wheat)
- 4 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 Tbsp filtered water
The Rest of the Gravy Ingredients
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 small onion, diced
- 1/2 cups mushrooms, sliced thin
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 cups of vegetable broth
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- Make the roux by mixing the flour, olive oil and water in a small bowl until it makes a thick paste. Then set the roux aside for later.
- Using the rest of the olive oil, sauté the onion and garlic in a medium skillet or sauce pan for two minutes on medium heat, stirring occasionally.
- Add in the mushrooms to the onion and garlic and sauté for two more minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Stir in the broth, soy sauce, nutmeg and cayenne and cook for two more minutes on low heat, stirring occasionally.
- Scrape in your roux paste and cook the whole mixture until the gravy is thick, about 10 minutes. Make sure to stir it frequently so it doesn’t burn.
- If you want to thicken up the gravy more, just sprinkle in some more flour — but make sure to whisk it in well so it’s not clumpy.
That’s it! Chow down!
This dish also, in my experience, is excellent alongside some tofu scramble with sautéed mushrooms, red onion and green pepper. Plus the leftovers store nicely in the fridge for a few more delicious breakfasts.