Are you looking for something delicious and festive to bake during the fall or holidays? These biscuits will make your turkey or ham sandwiches taste more like ones you order in a restaurant. You can also serve them as a side or snack with pumpkin butter. I made these to warm up the kids while they were carving pumpkins outside in the chilly weather. They loved them but who does not love comfort food?
The pumpkin not only adds the fall flavor but also plenty of vitamins and antioxidants to refuel your body and brain. The rosemary, sage and lemon zest in the Tuscan Himalayan salt provides your body with antioxidants and can improve digestion and circulation as well as may boast your brain power. If you do not have Tuscan Himalayan salt, then add some freshly chopped rosemary and sage and zest half an organic lemon. Use the highest quality, unprocessed salt you have as well.
You can make these biscuits ahead of time and freeze them. This recipe makes about 24 biscuits so you do not need to cook all of them at once unless you are going to a large family dinner. Do let them thaw before you place them in the oven to ensure they cook evenly.
The Country Living recipe said to bake them at 400 degrees for 25-30 minutes but I pulled mine out after 20 minutes and they were very dry and brown. I have a convection oven and it does cook faster than conventional ovens. I baked the second batch at 385 degrees for 15 minutes and they were perfect. They did not need to be coated in pumpkin butter like the first batch to hide the hockey puck texture.
1) Blend the 4 cups of flour, 2.5 tablespoons of baking powder, 2 teaspoons of Tuscan Himalayan salt or sea salt with some fresh rosemary and sage, pinch of cayenne pepper and 1/2 teaspoon of freshly grated ginger. You can use about 2 teaspoons of ground ginger instead of fresh.
2) Add the 2 sticks of chilled and chopped butter to the flour mixture and blend with a pastry cutter or use your hands. Do not let the butter melt. There should be lumps of butter in the mixture.
3) Mix the 1 1/2 cups of pumpkin purée and 1 tablespoon of honey. Taste and see if you want more honey. Blend the pumpkin with the flour so everything is thoroughly mixed together. The dough will not be sticky.
4) Add 1/2 cup of cream with 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice or use buttermilk. Pour the milk on top and mix. Now the dough will be very sticky.
5) Flour a large cutting board and place the sticky dough on top. Flour the ball of dough or your rolling pin will stick. Roll out the dough until it is about 1/2 to 3/4 in thickness. Use cookie cutters to cut the biscuit shapes. I used a large heart shape and tried to squish the bottom so it looked more like a pumpkin since we were carving them that night. A 2 to 3″ round cookie cutter would be best for sandwiches.
6) Use olive oil or a vegetable oil to lightly grease the parchment lined cookie sheet. Place the biscuits on the parchment paper and sprinkle some Parmesan and Tuscan salt on top.
7) Bake at 375 or 385 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes. Do not overcook or they will taste like hockey pucks and need the pumpkin butter to hide the dryness. My first batch was at 400 degrees for 20 minutes and they were really dry. The ones I cooked for 15 minutes until they were a light brown color were awesome. It made all the difference so watch them carefully!
8) To make pumpkin butter, melt 1/2 a stick (4 tablespoons) of pasture or unsalted butter, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of pumpkin purée, a pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg, and 1 to 2 tablespoons of local honey. Mix well. Taste to see if you want to add a pinch of salt and more honey. You can also use this recipe from Country Living which pairs with these pumpkin biscuits. I have not tried it but am sure it is delicious.
This recipe was adapted from the Country Living Pumpkin Biscuit recipe.