The best part of spending as much time thinking about food as I do is how ideas for dishes can morph and change the more you think about them.
This recipe started life as a post from Joy the Baker — which, if you’re reading this blog and not reading hers, well, you should really get on that — that had a recipe for tomato cobbler with a blue cheese biscuit topping. Genius, right? I’ve got tomatoes. I’ve got tomatoes coming out of my ears. And the funky saltiness of the blue cheese against the deep roasted sweetness and acidity of the tomatoes just made sense in my cook-brain.
The more I thought about it, though, the more I wanted to add some kind of protein to it. The first thing I think of when adding protein to a spoon-out dish like this is a poached egg. Or, you know, bacon. So why not both? And since we’ve got bacon and eggs and a biscuit, why don’t we just turn the whole thing inside out, flip it and reverse it, and make it a sandwich?
The real joy of this recipe for me was that three of the ingredients — the tomatoes, the spinach, and the onion — were all things from my Back to Basics series that I already had in my fridge. If you don’t have all three, or even if you don’t have any of the Back to Basics elements, you can still make a perfectly fine sandwich. But with them, the sandwich tastes deliciously complex, with the added bonus that you didn’t have to wake up an hour early to start caramelizing onions just to have them with breakfast.
Blue Cheese Biscuit Breakfast Sandwiches
Adapted from Joy the Baker.
Makes about 8 servings.
For the biscuits:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons baking powder
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
6 tablespoon unsalted butter, cold and cut into cubes
1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles
3/4 cup cold buttermilk
Heat your oven to 375° F.
In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and pepper with a whisk. Add the cold butter. With your fingers or a pastry blender, quickly pinch and rub the fat into the dry ingredients. Stop when it looks like crumble topping, but still has some pea-sized pieces of butter in there.
Stir the blue cheese crumbles into the flour and butter mixture, then add all but 1 tablespoon of the buttermilk and quickly stir everything together until a shaggy dough forms. Turn the mess out onto a lightly flour work surface and bring it together into a rough ball. Knead about ten times, just until it looks more uniform, then pat it out into a disc about 3/4 inch thick.
With a biscuit cutter or drinking glass 1.5-2 inches in diameter, cut out circles from the dough. Dip the biscuit cutter in flour to keep it from sticking. Once you’ve cut out all the whole circles you can, re-form the dough and keep cutting until you’ve used up all of the dough. You should have approximately 8 biscuits.
Place the biscuits onto a baking sheet at least 1 inch apart and brush the tops with the reserved buttermilk. Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool for about five minutes before making sandwiches.
For the sandwiches: cook as many slices of bacon as you want in a skillet. Warm as much of the tomatoes, greens, and caramelized onion as you think you will use, either in a skillet or in a microwave. Cook one egg per sandwich to your liking; over easy is excitingly messy.
Cut each biscuit in half and spread a teaspoon of caramelized onion on the bottom half. Stack with: a spoonful of greens, a few slices of bacon, the cooked egg, a big spoonful of tomatoes, then the top half of the biscuit. Devour immediately.
If you don’t want to bake off all of the biscuits at once, you can freeze them for later: stack the cut-out biscuit dough with layers of parchment paper between each biscuit, then wrap the whole cylinder in plastic wrap and foil. Pop individual frozen biscuits off the cylinder when you need them, then bake, adding about 5 minutes to the baking time.
Music to cook by: Ce Jeu [Yelle // Pop Up]