I don't want you to get the complete wrong impression of my family when it comes to music. Keep in mind that my mom is but a Fitzpatrick by marriage. "Yeah, so?" you may ask. Sooo, the Greene side of the family actually had some ability. Let me explain.
I couldn't exactly tell you how far back or from whom the musicality stems, but I can tell you with confidence that my grandfather had some natural genius. He built many instruments with his own two hands... banjos, fiddles, guitars... and with those same two hands taught himself how to play any instrument within reach. Folk music was more his jam than the pop of my childhood, and I can remember the country/folk/bluegrass tunes spinning off the record player, filling the house with glorious sound, and mingling with the smells of his always delicious cooking.
Mom inherited some of those genes. Not only is she a good cook, but she can sing and she taught herself the guitar as a teenager. Her record player would blast Linda Ronstadt, Emmylou Harris, Dolly Parton, Billy Joel, Elton John, The Beatles, and so much more that gave me understanding and respect for all sorts of music. I probably didn't appreciate that influence much as a child, but as I got into my teen years and definitely into my adult years, I am thankful for the exposure. I have impressed many an older colleague with my knowledge of the likes of Joe Cocker and Bonnie Raitt.
I appreciate all the musical inspiration you gave us, Mom, but could you have not spared a couple of those genes? At least enough to offset the tone-deafness Dad handed down?
Today's recipe is a mix of present and yesteryear. I take a simple biscuit recipe, one any southern grandma or grandpa would pass on through the generations, and jazz it up a bit with a modern flavor combo of chocolate and rosemary. In this instance the the rosemary, and not the chocolate, offers a slightly sweet and fragrant note that the cocoa powder balances with a slightly bitter bite. Serve these biscuits alongside any breakfast, brunch, or dinner entree with a healthy slathering of some salty butter and prepare to wow your guests with the unexpected (biscuits, not singing).
The Recipe: Chocolate Rosemary Biscuits
yields ~ 12-15 biscuits
The Bits and Bobs:
1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
8 tbsp unsalted butter, cold and cubed
3/4 cup whole milk
1 tbsp chopped rosemary
Preheat the oven to 425*F and grease a sheet pan with butter
Combine the flour, cocoa, sugar, salt, and baking powder in a bowl. Cut the butter into the flour mix using your fingers with a pinching movement until the mix resembles oatmeal. Add the rosemary.
Make a well in the middle of the flour and gradually add the milk. You may not need to use the full 3/4 cup. Knead with your fingers until the dough has come together and is slightly sticky.
Turn dough out onto a floured surface and roll out to about 1/4-1/2 inch thickness. Use a round cutter to punch out the biscuits. Place on greased baking sheet and bake for 12 minutes or until the tops are nice and crisp. Brush the finished biscuits with melted butter and sprinkle with sea salt (optional).