Biscuits and Gravy

My favorite breakfast meal, hands down, is biscuits and gravy. Actually, I’d eat this at any meal, but I admit I’m a bit of a biscuits and gravy snob. I’m picky about this recipe. I want to see the meat, not have it all pureed so all you get is the sausage flavor. I also dislike it when the gravy is simply browned sausage in a white, pasty gravy that has no flavor, or all you can taste is flour.

Years ago when Kevin and I first were married, I spent a lot of time at the library looking through cookbooks trying to improve my meager cooking skills. Somewhere along the line I ran across a biscuits and gravy recipe. Perhaps it was from one of Chef Paul Prudhomme’s cookbooks, but I don’t really remember, but the recipe was delicious, and I’ve used it ever since.


Biscuits and Gravy

1 1/2 pound sage-flavored breakfast sausage
1/2 onion, diced
3 to 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour (more or less depending how much grease you get from the sausage)
1 pint half-and-half cream
2 to 2 1/2 cups milk (depending how thick or thin you like your gravy)
1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1/4  teaspoon grated nutmeg (I like using fresh)
Hot pepper sauce to taste (I use 5 to 6 dashes – the boys like a little heat!)

In a large skillet, brown the sausage with the diced onion over medium-high heat. Cook until browned. Do not drain. Sprinkle the all-purpose flour over the meat mixture. Mix well, and cook until all the sausage drippings are incorporated into the flour, about 5 minutes.

Add the half-and-half cream and milk to the skillet. Add the poultry seasoning, nutmeg and hot pepper sauce. Combine everything well, and stir until the gravy reaches your desired consistency. I like my gravy medium consistency:



Serve over warm biscuits.

Yield: 4 to 6 servings (only 4 in my household of a hungry husband and 2 sons with big appetites!)

Honey Roasted Chicken

We raised chickens this year, for the first time in a few, and after the poultry/avian flu problem earlier this year, boy am I glad we did. These are meat chickens, and we’ll be getting some laying hens in a few weeks so I can stop paying $4 for a dozen eggs – and have tastier eggs to boot.

Now that we have all these chickens in the freezer, I’ve been on the hunt for different recipes. We love fried chicken and barbecue chicken, but you can only eat those so many times without never wanting to see a chicken again! I found a recipe on Oh, Sweet Basil for honey-roasted chicken, and I think I’ve found a new favorite! Not only is the recipe easy, but the accompanying sauce is tasty and complements the honey very nicely. The guys said I can definitely make this again.




Honey Roasted Chicken

1 tablespoon salt
2 teaspoons pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
2 whole chickens (3 1/2 to 4 pounds each), giblets discarded (or saved for another use)
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon water
1/2 cup honey
5 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 cup chicken broth
2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves
2 tablespoons butter

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit, and move the rack to the center position.

In a small bowl, combine the salt, pepper and paprika. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels, and rub the spice mixture under the skin and over the outside of each bird. Tuck the wings behind the back, and tie the legs together with kitchen twine to ensure even cooking.

Stir the cornstarch and 1 tablespoon water together in a small bowl until well combined. Set aside.

In a small saucepan, bring the honey and 4 tablespoons of the cider vinegar to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cook until the mixture is reduced to about 1/2 cup, about 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Slowly whisk the cornstarch mixture into the glaze. Return to a simmer, and cook for one minute. Set aside.

Arrange the chicken, breast side down, on a rack inside a roasting pan. Roast until the chicken is golden, about 35 minutes. Remove the roasting pan from the oven, and carefully flip the chicken so it is breast side up. Raise the oven temperature to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Pour 1 cup water and the chicken broth into the roasting pan. Return the pan to the oven, and roast until the thigh meat registers 165 to 170 degrees Fahrenheit, about 35 to 45 minutes. Brush the chicken evenly with a thick layer of the glaze, and continue to roast until the glaze is golden brown, about 10 minutes.

Transfer the chicken to a cutting board, and brush with the remaining glaze. Let rest for 15 minutes.

While the chicken is resting, pour pan juices into a saucepan, and skim off any fat. Stir in the thyme. Bring to a simmer, and cook until the sauce is slightly thickened and reduced to 1 cup, about 15 minutes. Off the heat, whisk in the butter and the remaining 1 tablespoon of cider vinegar. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Carve the chicken, and serve with the sauce.

Chocolate Pound Cake

I was in the mood for cake, and after searching through my recipes on Pinterest, I decided on pound cake. Thanks to making bread earlier, I had a few extra egg yolks, and I didn’t have enough unsweetened chocolate in the house, so I made a few modifications to the recipe I found to use what I had on hand.

I adore anything with chocolate, and I love pound cake, so this recipe was made for me 🙂



Chocolate Pound Cake

3 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/4 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups milk
1 cup butter, softened
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, melted and cooled
4 ounces good bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled (I used Ghirardelli)
2 eggs plus 3 egg yolks
1-2 teaspoons good vanilla extract

Great and lightly flour a 10-inch tube pan. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add milk, butter and cooled chocolate. Carefully mix on low to medium speed until combined. Beat at medium speed for 2 minutes.

Add eggs and vanilla extract. Beat 2 minutes more.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan, spreading evenly. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 1 hour, or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack for 20 minutes. Remove cake from the pan, and cool completely on a wire rack.