Simple Shortcuts: Powdered Buttermilk

Banana Biscuits au Chocolat | Persnickety Biscuit

Until now, I have been fairly strict with my biscuit ingredient choices. I choose buttermilk, not the milk and lemon juice substitute many swear by. Butter, not margarine. White Lily flour, not store brand. But there are times you can’t get to the store but you still want biscuits, so what do you do?

The fact is that there are many more variations on biscuit ingredients and recipes than there are readers of this blog, so there are a lot of answers to that question. I decided to test one out that I have not heard anyone else mention: powdered buttermilk.

Powdered Buttermilk| Persnickety Biscuit

This nifty little invention can be found in the baking aisle of your local grocery store – where evaporated, condensed, and powdered milks are to be found. Directions for use are on the side of the container. Basically, a few tablespoons of the mix are added to your dry ingredients. Then water or some other kind of liquid is added at the appropriate time.

Biscuit Dough| Persnickety Biscuit

 

For my experiment, I decided to use my banana biscuit recipe as my base. I used the appropriate amount of powdered buttermilk and mixed it in with the flour. Then I chose almond milk as my liquid, because that is what I had on hand. Besides, I figured the vanilla flavor in the milk would just be a bonus.

Otherwise, I pretty much followed the recipe. Of course, I also used some of the dough to make little chocolate filled pockets because, well, why not?

Banana Biscuits au Chocolat | Persnickety Biscuit

Banana Biscuits au Chocolat

Why choose this biscuit recipe?
This was all about convenience. I had all of the ingredients on hand: the overripe banana, almond milk, and powdered buttermilk.

What is persnickety about this biscuit recipe?
The thing that surprised me was when I added the wet ingredients to the dry. The dough was initially too dry, so I added a little more liquid. Then it seemed like the dough got really wet, really fast. I wondered if there were some kind of chemical reaction with the powdered buttermilk and the liquid that caused this. Do any of you readers know?

So how were the biscuits?
Delicious! We enjoyed a few of them and then the rest were bundled up and left with a friend who was dealing with a family crisis. At the end of all of my recipes, I say “Share with someone you love,” so that is what I did. She reported back that they did not last long in her household.

Banana Biscuits | Persnickety Biscuit

 

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The Best Biscuit Sandwich Ever

Banana Biscuits

What to do with leftover Banana Biscuits?

I was alone in the house when I made them, which means, contrary to what one might think, I did not eat them all. I also happened to have a supply of leftover ham. It would not have occurred to me, under normal circumstances, to combine ham and banana. But something told me that it just might work. From that point on, I tried not to think too much.

Cooking is sometimes a little like sports – you have to get in the zone. Let your senses do the work – smell, taste, feel …. bake.

ham swiss butter mustard

Sometimes, if you are lucky, there will be magic. This was one of those times, if I do say so myself. The hint of banana, combined with the smoky ham and sweet/tangy mustard, is perfect. Make some of these for your next party or book club or just a leisurely weekend breakfast at home.

Ham Swiss Banana Biscuit Sandwich

>>> Click here to download a printable version.

Banana Ham Swiss Biscuit Sandwich

(aka The Best Biscuit Sandwich Ever)

Ingredients:

  • 6 large Banana Biscuits
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • ½ lb ham, diced
  • 1 cup shredded good quality swiss cheese
  • ¼ cup Honey Baked Ham hickory mustard (or any honey mustard)
  • 4 T. butter, melted, divided into two
  • ¼ tsp. onion powder
  • ¼ tsp. poppy seeds

Directions:

  • Heat oven to 400 degrees. Cover cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  • Scramble eggs and divide into six parts. Do not overcook the eggs.
  • Slice biscuits. Place bottoms of biscuits close together on parchment paper.
  • Combine mustard and onion powder with 2 T. of butter.
  • Spread mustard mixture on both tops and bottoms of biscuits.
  • Cover bottom halves of biscuits with half of swiss cheese and all of the ham.
  • Spread scrambled eggs over ham.
  • Top with swiss cheese.
  • Put tops of biscuits on top of cheese.
  • Brush tops of biscuits with remaining 2 T. melted butter mixed with poppy seeds.
  • Bake for 12-15 minutes or until cheese melts.
  • Remove from oven and run a knife between the biscuits to make sure they are separated.
  • Share them with someone you love.

Banana Biscuits with a Nutella Variation

Banana Biscuits with Nutella

I have a narrow window when it comes to bananas that are ripe enough but not too ripe. And I eat a banana almost every day. This means two things.

(1) I make frequent trips to the grocery store and bananas are always on my list. Always. Literally. I use a grocery list app on my phone and never clear bananas from the list.

And…

(2) There are frequently overripe bananas that must be dealt with, partly on purpose and partly by chance. I use them in smoothies and lately for this Pinterest recipe for easy banana “ice cream.”

This weekend I decided to try making Banana Buttermilk Biscuits.

Banana Biscuits

Where did this biscuit recipe come from?

It was inspired by this one from Dine and Dish, but I made a few modifications based on the ingredients I had on hand and my hope to punch up the flavors a bit. I particularly thought more vanilla flavor and banana would be nice.

Mashed banana with vanilla

Mashed banana with vanilla

Why choose this biscuit recipe?

I did not see a lot of options when it came to banana biscuits, so decided to go with this one and just vary a couple of things slightly.

Banana Biscuits

What is persnickety about this biscuit recipe?

This dough was really sticky! I did not end up putting in more banana, which was just as well. I don’t think I would have had any luck cutting out the biscuits if I had. I did add more vanilla.

Banana Biscuits

I also decided that I needed to add a variation. Since I am partial to the combination of Nutella and bananas, I went with that.

Nutella

I thought I should freeze the Nutella to make chunks of it, but I had read that Nutella does not freeze well. Perhaps because I was -ahem- using on off-brand, I had no trouble getting thin, frozen, little sheets of it. I layered these with the dough right before cutting it out.

Banana Biscuit Dough with Nutella

Banana Biscuit Dough with Nutella

Nutella on Dough

Nutella Folded in and Ready for the Oven

So how were the biscuits?

I have to say that these surprised me a bit. I had guessed that the Nutella variation would be my favorite, but found myself partial to the plain banana biscuit. Well, plain with honey butter! Because everything is better with honey butter! I made the biscuits huge so they were moist and fluffy inside with just enough banana flavor to enhance the buttermilk biscuit flavor.

Banana Biscuits with Honey Butter

Bottom line is that they were wonderful and you should go make them. Now. Go ahead. I’ll wait.

How were the leftovers prepared?

Ahhh, these leftovers got special treatment. So special that I will be dedicating a whole post to what became The Best Biscuit Sandwich Ever. Stay tuned!

Banana Biscuits

>>> Click here for printable biscuit recipe.

Banana Biscuits (with Nutella variation)

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups White Lilly Self-Rising flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup butter-flavored Crisco, frozen and cut into small pieces
  • 1 very ripe banana mashed
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk

Directions:

  • Heat oven to 400 degrees. Cover cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  • Mix the first three dry ingredients.
  • Add Crisco to dry ingredients and rub with your fingers to make the Crisco break up into small, pea sized pieces.
  • Combine mashed banana, vanilla, and buttermilk
  • Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the buttermilk mixture. Mix quickly with large spoon or hands, turning bowl and gently scooping the dry ingredients into the wet. Add more buttermilk, if needed, to make dough moist but not too wet. It will be somewhat sticky.
  • Sprinkle flour onto countertop or pastry board. Dump dough out of bowl onto flour. Sprinkle flour onto dough and rub onto hands. Knead a few times. Press dough together and flatten to about 1/2 inch. Fold dough in half. A pastry scraper can be really helpful here to lift up the dough.
  • Transfer dough to parchment paper. Press out to about 1/2 inch. Make into a rough rectangular shape. Using a pastry scraper, knife, spatula or other edge, cut dough into squares about 1 1/2 inches across. You do not need to move the dough after cutting.
  • Put cookie sheet in oven and bake for about 15 minutes, until tops of biscuits are slightly browned. If you wish, take the biscuits out of the oven a couple of minutes before they are done and brush the tops of the biscuits with butter, then return them to the oven.
  • Remove from oven, let rest a few minutes, then break apart and eat!
  • Share with someone you love.

Nutella Variation

  • Use 1/4 cup or more of Nutella, depending on whether you are using a full or partial batch of the biscuits.
  • Spread thin sheet of Nutella onto wax paper and put into freezer for at least one hour before you begin making the biscuits.
  • Flatten dough to ¼ to ½ inch. Break up Nutella and spread the bits on the outer two thirds of the dough. [see photo above]
  • Fold dough towards the middle, like a letter folder into thirds. Transfer to cookie sheet, flatten dough slightly, and cut into squares.
  • Bake as directed.