Pecan Sour Cream Biscuits

Autumn, Bread, Breakfast / Wednesday, September 3rd, 2008

I love making breakfast.

It should make me curl into the fetal position and rock myself, since my mom was Queen of the Rude Awakening. She would wake me up by flickering the bedroom light and singing at the top of her lungs: “Good mornin’, good mornin’! We’ve talked the whole night through, good mornin’, good mornin’ to you-hoo-hoo-hoo-HOOOOOOO!”

Oh, the agony of being an angsty teen and waking up to Debbie Reynolds every morning. Pass the flannel and the black eyeliner!

I wasn’t a morning person until I switched careers and started working at a German bakery. I had to be there, bright-eyed and ready to strudel, at 3:45 a.m. It was very weird to pass the late-night/early-morning party people on the road and realize you were living in their tomorrow, but I liked the solitude of unlocking the bakery door and getting the day started. I’d make a variety of croissants, coffee cakes and breakfast pastries every morning. Cinnamon rolls on the weekends. I’d always set one aside for Jeff, who would drive to my hometown to see me on the weekends. A little bribery never hurt.

Have I made a single cinnamon roll since we got married? Mmmm, no. Mainly because it’s hard to make a single cinnamon roll. You have to make many, many cinnamon rolls. So, I’ll wait until they can be shared. But, I do make breakfast for  Jeff every morning. I’ve heard that I’m “ruining it for everyone,” but trust me, this man deserves breakfast. Last night, I was miserable with a sinus headache and the hot-sleeping, and Jeff got up around 3 a.m. to get me a Benadryl. On the way, he stepped in cat puke. So, he had to clean his foot and the floor and then find my Benadryl, which he brought me with a nice, tall glass of extra-cold water full of glorious crushed ice.

This man deserves a hot breakfast.

Now, that breakfast includes biscuits – a new one for me. Before, I was pretty content to buy a sack of frozen ones and rejoice over the convenience, but my mom has thrown down the gauntlet. She says a woman can’t make a decent biscuit before menopause, and I just can’t have that. It’s Debbie Reynolds all over again. So, the pastry blender and the rolling pin are ready to go.

My latest experiment is Dorie Greenspan’s recipe for Pecan Sour Cream Biscuits. Sweet from the brown sugar, tangy from the sour cream, crunchy from the toasted pecans, these things are pretty addictive. If you don’t have a pastry blender and/or rolling pin, you can easily work the butter with your fingertips and pat out the dough with your hands. Just make sure your ingredients are cold, and work quickly.

And remember: “Good mornin’, good mornin’ to you-hoo-hoo-hoo-HOOOOOOO!”

Pecan Sour Cream Biscuits

From Dorie Greenspan’s “Baking: From My Home to Yours”

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (or 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour and 1/3 cup cake flour)
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 cup (packed) light brown sugar
  • 5 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 10 pieces
  • 1/2 cup cold sour cream
  • 1/4 cup cold whole milk
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped pecans, preferably toasted
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Get out a sharp 2-inch-diameter biscuit cutter, and line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat.
  2. Whisk the flour(s), baking powder, salt and baking soda together in a bowl.
  3. Stir in the brown sugar.
  4. Drop in the butter, and, using your fingers, toss to coat the pieces of butter with the flour. Quickly, working with your fingertips or a pastry blender, cut and rub the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture is pebbly.
  5. Stir the sour cream and milk together, and pour over the dry ingredients. Grab a fork and gently toss and turn the ingredients together until you’ve got a nice soft dough. Reach into the bowl with your hands and give the dough a quick, gentle kneading–3 or 4 turns should be just enough to bring everything together.
  6. Toss in the pecans, and knead another 2 to 3 times to incorporate them.
  7. Lightly dust a work surface with flour and turn out the dough. Dust the top of the dough very lightly with flour, and pat the dough out with your hands or roll it with a pin until it is about 1/2 inch high.
  8. Use the biscuit cutter to cut out as many biscuits as you can. Place them on the biscuits to the baking sheet. Gather together the scraps, working them as little as possible, pat out to a 1/2-inch thickness and cut out as many biscuits as you can; transfer these to the sheet. (The biscuits can be made up to this point and frozen on the baking sheet, then wrapped airtight and kept for up to 2 months. Bake without defrosting–just add a couple more minutes to the oven time.)
  9. Bake the biscuits for 14 to 18 minutes, or until they are tall, puffed and golden brown. Transfer them to a serving basket.

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30 thoughts on “Pecan Sour Cream Biscuits

  1. Far be it from me to twist your childhood memories, but that was Debbie Reynolds who sang the Good Morning song, in Singing In The Rain. How do I know this? I used to sing it to my kids, as your mother did to you. We just thought we were helping you wake up with a smile! :)

    I love biscuits, but I don’t have a real written-down recipe. I just watched my old country grandmother make them so many times I learned how without knowing it. It helps to have the old dark pans she used, but I’m not sharing. Can’t wait to see all the recipes you accumulate!

  2. Lori: Thanks for the correction! When I Googled the song, Judy Garland popped up. I had no idea who sang it or where it came from. One childhood mystery solved!

  3. Yo Mama sounds like a wonderful person. You should be thankful that she woke you up and didn’t let you sleep until noon and become a bum. I bet she has to stop herself from calling you every morning at 5AM to help you great the morn.

    Biscuits after menopause: self-rising flour (Lily White) + Crisco + buttermilk and a smidge of baking soda. It will take you the next 20 years to perfect the proportions.

  4. My dad should meet your Mum. Seriously. He used to wake me by ripping off the covers or putting ice cubes on my toes, he thrived in the torture:)

  5. I’ve made these too, they’re great!

    My Mom used to sing annoying wake up songs too… I would pull the covers over my head and try to squeeze my ears shut.

  6. Those look soooo good. It’s been a long time since I’ve had a proper, freshly baked biscuit (I miss you, Grandma!). Gonna have to try them. Like today.

  7. Just listened to both versions on iTunes. Debbie Reynolds version with a mama twist because I just never can remember all those WORDS. So I sing a little and make up a lot of words. Until Rebecca and Jen were practically grown they thought I WROTE all those songs. Bless their hearts :)
    Yo Mama

  8. Love me some biscuits! My husband says he isn’t a breakfast person, but amazingly whenever I make him a sort of take along treat like muffins or granola bars, I notice one always gets tucked into his bag. Evidently he just means “I am not a person who wants to make breakfast for myself.” These biscuits look lovely, and I think I’ll have to try them for his commute next week. Thanks for posting.

    I would sing to my children in the morning, but that would be considered cruelty, I’m sure.

  9. My husband would think something was wrong if I got up to make breakfast, LOL! In my defense, I do make on the weekends…but not before 9 am. I have a problem with mornings. These biscuits look fantastic and your pictures are making me drool :)

  10. I sing the boys awake every morning. And it’s the Good Morning song momma sang to us. However they appreciate it because Husband just turns on the lights and says “Get up!” Logan says my singing at least lets them laugh. Wait, maybe that’s not a good thing.

  11. My Dad used to regale us with Dear Old Golden School Days and the Singin in the Rain classic. I can’t help but do the same thing now to my tired two. I used to make breakfast for my hub-but that was over when the kids came. Now we all sort of fend for ourselves on the weekday mornings. I’d love to make these on the weekends. Your bakery job sounds lovely. I love mornings alone.

  12. I had a Raggedy Ann and Andy alarm clock that would say, “Andy, Andy please get up! It’s time to brush our teeth and wash our face..” and two other lines in that same singsong voice. I don’t think I kept that alarm clock very long.

    Back to biscuits. I have a recipe for ginger buttermilk biscuits that this sort of reminds me of. I should try these – they sound divine. I loves me some brown sugar and pecans.

    1. I had the same alarm clock! "Andy, Andy, please get up, it's time to start our day!"
      "Okay Ann, I'm awake, and here we are to say!" "We were sent to wake you, here we are to say… please get up and brush your teeth and have a happy day!" And then the wretched "dee doo dee doo" started playing,.. LOL I miss that ol' clock. But I don't think I'd enjoy it as an adult. :)

  13. My mom used to sing that song to me as she gently opened my window to let a cool crisp morning breeze brush my awakening face. Now I have the pleasure of singing it to my kids..well one..I have two teenage daughters that may not appreciate it as much. I love your biscuits and can’t wait to try the recipe.

  14. What memories! I think toasted pecans should be in all biscuits. I love the taste of melted butter on a fresh biscuit. What an amazing photo.

  15. Oh my lord, I thought my mom was the only one to sing that song at the top of her lungs when she flipped on the light switch *every morning*! It’s been nearly 10 years ago, but I still cringe every time I think of that song!

  16. Well at least you weren’t named Suzy…
    My mom sang “Wake up Little Suzy” every morning as she flipped the switch! I’ve made these biscuits before and loved them. Addictive, indeed! I haven’t tried anything from that book that I haven’t loved yet.

  17. Anyone know now adays where to find the famous Raggedy Ann & Andy talking alarm clock that I used to listen to? "Andy, andy please wake up….."

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