I've been seeing a lot of dazed people at my gym lately, walking around aimlessly. I assume these are those fabled New Years Resolutioners who are getting their buns in gear this month. You know, the "I promise to get my 30 minutes of excise a day" or "I'm going to eat healthy" people. I have mixed feelings about these poor souls: It's wonderful that they want to make a change in their lives. But I'm not sure they're going about it the right way.
As someone who completely overhauled their way of eating, I can promise you that a change like that takes years. Your french fry craving won't go away overnight. But that's okay. It takes baby steps - start with lowering your processed food/sugar intake, then work on portions, then increase your veggies, and on and on. You will slip. Of course you will. But that's okay. Having a treat on the weekend is not the end of the world.
And boy do we have a weekend treat for you:
Sometimes you have to say no to that extra bit of cake. And other times you have to indulge. This is one of those times.
Buttermilk biscuits are something that's easy and heart warming to make. Enjoying them, especially right out of the oven, is one of life's simple pleasures. The warm, buttery layers melt in your mouth, leaving that biscuit shaped hole in your heart filled (finally!). I'm sure I don't have to sell you out of your diet for one of these babies. We paired these fluffy little morsels with something a bit dangerous. Something a bit meaty.
Bacon jam may be something that raises eyebrows, but, I promise you, it's worth those few extra fatty calories. Once you stuff this stuff in your maw, and the sweet and salty flavours make love to your taste buds, you'll be in a happy place. The sort of happy place where there is no gym, diets, or New Years Resolutions. The sort of happy place where there are only buttermilk biscuits. And bacon jam.
Very slightly adapted from Martha Stewart
Makes about 14 biscuits
4 cups AP flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup butter (cut into cubes)
2 cups buttermilk (whole fat, please!)
1) Preheat oven 375 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk together your flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar. Using your hands, mix in the butter until you're left with a sandy texture and pea sized chunks of butter throughout. Add the buttermilk and mix until you've created a stick dough.
2) Place a hefty amount of flour on your work space, and flatten the dough onto it, creating a disk that's about one inch flat. Cut out circles of dough, about two and a half inches in diameter, and place them on your baking tray. Bake for about 20 minutes, or until they tops have begun to get golden brown. Let cool slightly before enjoying.
Adapted from Evil Shenanigans
Makes about a cup and a bit of jam
1 pound bacon, not pre-sweetened or pre-flavoured - no maple, etc (cut into about an inch long pieces
1 large yellow onion (cut into quarter inch slices)
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
3 cloves garlic (minced)
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 cup brewed espresso (strong coffee works well too)
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup good quality whiskey
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tablespoon sriracha
1) In a large pan, cook your bacon, a quarter pound at a time, until it's just started to get crispy around the edges. Set aside on a paper towel and drain the pan of bacon fat. Add your onion and brown sugar to the pan and cook until everything is really well caramelized. Add the garlic, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, cayenne, and paprika and cook for another couple of minutes.
2) Add your espresso, vinegar, whiskey, maple syrup, sriracha, and cooked bacon into the pan. Increase the heat to a boil, and stir mixture every 15 minutes until it has thickened to a very syrupy state - about an hour in total.
3) Let the mixture cool slightly and pulse in a food processor until you get your preferred consistency (I believe Mr. C hit the pulse button about 15 to 18 times). Smear it warm on a biscuit and forget about your New Years Resolution. Store in an air tight container, and refrigerate when not using.