When In Doubt, Call Mom

So I’m standing in the middle of the baking aisle in the grocery store, staring aimlessly at the plethora of bags of flour, desperately searching for self-rising flour.  Why in the world do I pick recipes with ingredients I don’t understand???  I mean, I get the whole “self-rising” thing, but really?  Can’t ya just throw in some baking powder and call it a day?

“Wait, call Mom,” I think as I’m starting to get ever so slightly frustrated (understatement).  And so I call Mom and she patiently, gently explains how to create your own self-rising flour.  This is one of the many reasons why I love my Mom, she knows important baking stuff like this.  FYI – for every cup of flour, use one teaspoon of baking powder and a pinch of salt.

This Sunday morning started with a short stroll in the backyard (which is tiny, hence a “short” stroll) and cutting some of the gorgeous roses that have opened.  Seriously, they’re crazy awesome right now!

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Paul and I had a discussion about how to best get rid of the aphids that are trying to attack these beauties.  As we searched for the oil spray we use to protect our lovely little bloomers, we were laughing remembering when we tried to set boxes of ladybugs free in our garden to feast upon those little green buggers.  I explained to Paul that there’s an awesome children’s book by Eric Carle called The Grouchy Ladybug who doesn’t want to share his aphids with other ladybugs.  It’s super cute, and we giggled as I imitated the grouchy ladybug.

Wow, that was a random tangent!  Anyway…

Y’all know my loathing for tedious tasks such as peeling any kind of fruit or vegetable and shredding cheese.  However those pale in comparison to my hatred of picking herbal leaves off of their stems, such as cilantro or parsley or thyme.

Earlier this week I was grumpily stripping thyme stems of their leaves, but smiled as I took a whiff of that fragrant smell.  It’s just soft and comforting, and I thought to myself why not try to make a thyme biscuit or scone?

In researching, I found plenty of recipes that called for thyme and some kind of cheese which sounded great.  But I’ve already made things like that.  So I chose the one that just sounded deliciously  weird.  The ingredients in this little pillow of herbal goodness are kind of funky, i.e. sprite, but they turned out really well.

The biscuits themselves are simple and in truth, boring.  But they’re enhanced greatly with the honey-thyme butter.  In hindsight, I would have added lemon rind to either the biscuits or the honey or both.  Thyme and lemon go together like two peas in a pod, so lemon would have added a nice surprise.

Oh, one last thing.  Obviously I forgot to leave out the butter to soften over night, so I placed the bowl with the butter on the stovetop with the intention of softening it.  Well, of course it melted because I forgot about it.  Oops.  The flavors were totally fine, but the texture slightly weirded out Paul (not enough to stop him from eating two biscuits though).  With that said, learn from my mistake… I would suggest working with softened butter, not melted.

Thyme Biscuits with Honey Thyme Butter (care of womansday.com)

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INGREDIENTS:  ½ cup unsalted butter, 3 tbsp. honey, 2 tbsp. fresh thyme leaves, 1 tsp. fresh thyme leaves, 3 cups self-rising flour, ¼ tsp. black pepper, ¾ cup lemon-lime soda, (such as Sprite), ¾ cup heavy cream

DIRECTIONS:  Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a small bowl, combine the butter, honey, and 1 teaspoon thyme. Cover and set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the flour, pepper and remaining 2 tablespoons thyme. Make a well in the center. Using a fork, gently stir in the soda and heavy cream, mixing just until incorporated (do not overmix).  Drop heaping tablespoons (you should have 16 total) onto the prepared baking sheet. Bake until puffed and golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Serve the biscuits warm or at room temperature with the honey-thyme butter.

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