Fluffy biscuits are jazzed up with Cracker Barrel sharp cheddar cheese, spicy jalapenos and bacon for a recipe that you can make even on a weeknight.
There’s something about freshly made biscuits.
Fresh from the oven biscuits taste like butter and accomplishment. I’m fascinated at how fat, flour and baking powder can create a puffy, flaky round hump of goodness. My eyes light up after taking the first bite into a warm biscuit, so fresh that flour is still on my hands and arms from rolling them out.
When I was growing up, my family would go out for breakfast one day during the weekend. The restaurant was called George’s Cafe, and at the time they had a restaurant out at the airport not far from my home. Breakfast foods are some of my favorite foods and it was here that I learned for my love of biscuits and gravy (and most likely, bacon).
Later in college, I would order biscuits and gravy for breakfast from George’s Cafe because they built a small restaurant in our commons. It was great and I spent way too much of my college credit money there. All of Indiana State University did.
I made my own biscuits with flare because, well why not? These biscuits can be the star of a meal. Cracker Barrel extra sharp cheddar cheese is a must because of its smooth and rich flavor with the a sharp bite that wakes up your tastebuds. Several other food bloggers are sharing recipes with Cracker Barrel cheese and Kraft Mac N’ Cheese that bring back memories – just follow #KraftCooking on Google+ to find them all.
On June 4, 2013 I interviewed Jeff Mauro of The Sandwich King thanks to Cracker Barrel. They asked if I would be interested in asking Jeff a few questions in honor of National Cheese Day and their recent awards, and I said yes. Jeff is one of my favorite Food Network chefs because I, too, love sandwiches. But what I love more is how he took main dishes such as pot pie and turned them into sandwiches. The dude just gets it.
Cheddar Jalapeno Bacon Biscuits
- 6 sliced bacon
- 3 jalapenos
- 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tbsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 stick unsalted butter
- 2 tbsp shortening
- 2 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese (I used Cracker Barrel Extra Sharp Cheddar)
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp water
In a large skillet, brown bacon over medium high heat. Remove and set aside. Wash, remove seeds and finely dice the jalapenos. Add to the bacon grease and cook until soft, 3-5 minutes. Place the jalapenos in a small bowl and set aside. Crumble the bacon with your fingers and set that aside, too.
In a medium bowl, add flour, baking powder and kosher salt. In another bowl, shred the cheese. Cut the butter into cubes and place in a small bowl with the shortening. Put these three bowls in your refrigerator for 30 minutes to cool.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Once chilled, add them all to the bowl of a stand mixer. Mix on low speed until butter and shortening have incorporated and the consistency is crumbly.
Add the cooked but cooled jalapenos and crispy bacon pieces to the stand mixer and mix on low for 30 seconds. Pour the milk into the mixer slowly just until incorporated.
Prepare a space with flour to roll out the dough. Using your hands, work fast to knead the dough for one minute, then shape into a large rectangle. Roll out the dough until 3/4 inch thick and, using a biscuit cutter or by turning a glass over, cut biscuits out of the dough. Take the scraps and re-roll them to make more biscuits.
Place the cut biscuits on a baking sheet with a silicon mat or parchment paper. Mix the egg and water together in a small bowl to create an egg wash. Brush the wash over the tops of the biscuits. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until lightly browned. Let cool, then serve with country gravy, make sandwiches out of them or enjoy with a nice pot of soup or chili.