A couple of nights ago, I whipped up a ground beef sloppy joe type mixture for dinner. I usually serve this in a bun, but still being on our "no bread" food plan, I thought of serving it over mashed potatoes.
Now although this would have delighted my husband no end (meat and potatoes . . . what could be better?), the thought of that combo just wasn't doin' it for me.
"Heck," I thought. "I'm gonna make some homemade biscuits and ladle the sloppy joe mixture over those." (Please don't call the diet police.) "But I'll make 'em as healthy as I can."
I got out my recipe for Spelt Biscuits. Spelt, you say? What is spelt?
Spelt is a sub-species of wheat that has not been widely know, grown or used in our country although it's been popular in Europe for a long while. It's an old, old (ancient actually) grain that has the nutritional value close to that of oats. It's only been in the fairly recent years of folks getting into the organic, nutritionally-conscious, whole foods frame of mind that spelt has come to be recognized as a wholesome grain. Because it hasn't been widely popular, it hasn't been hybridized as nearly all of the commercially grown wheat is in our country. An added advantage of spelt is that many folks with an allergy to common wheat can tolerate spelt.
I find it to have a sweet, nutty flavor, and I've used it interchangeably in any recipe calling for whole wheat.
2-1/2 cups spelt flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup grated cheddar cheese
1/3 cup butter
1 cup buttermilk or sour milk
Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl. With a pastry blender cut in butter and grated cheese until mixture is uniform in size.
Add buttermilk (or sour milk) and stir just until well mixed. Batter will be very moist at this point.
Turn onto a floured surface (I use unbleached white flour for this part of the process) and sprinkle dough liberally with more flour so that you can gently handle it. You want to be able to work with the dough but keep in mind the more flour you add, the less tender and flaky the biscuits will be.
Knead 8-10 times and roll out to 1/2" thickness. Cut with a 2-1/2" biscuit cutter and place on an ungreased baking sheet.
I have this set of square biscuit cutters I just love. I used the biggest which is about 2-3/4" across.
Bake in a 425 degree oven for about 12 minutes or until golden brown. I got ten good-sized biscuits with my cutter.
These turn out to be a hearty but very moist, great tasting biscuit. They tasted particularly good with the sloppy joe mixture. We each ate one biscuit and then I froze the leftover remaining eight. (They do freeze very well, by the way.)
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