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Saturday, February 02, 2013

Biscuits & Gravy

Today was a Farmers Market day with the bonus of biscuits & gravy (Friends of the Market fundraiser). I love biscuits and gravy, but it is true that they don't go down the way they used to. I think the very act of eating them is more about nostalgia than anything. As a food, they are heavy and full of flour and salt. Yum, none-the-less. I enjoyed them. And I enjoyed that so many people joined us at the market today and seemed to enjoy them, as well.

My mother always made biscuits and gravy from scratch. For much of my childhood I would say it was a staple breakfast for us... at least through the winter months. She'd pull them from the oven and immediately split them open and stick a pat of butter inside before dropping them in a basket covered with a dish towel. They would still be warm when you opened them and the butter would be melted and wonderful.

I had a special method for eating biscuits and gravy. The first I would pull from the basket and devour the soft bready-covered-in-butter inside. I would scrape it clean with my teeth, then enjoy the more crunchy outer portion of the biscuit. Biscuits two and three were eaten together. These were split in half and laid out on my plate, biscuit tops on one side and biscuit bottoms on the other. They were the main course. I'd spoon the gravy over them. Mom would tell the story about how Grandma Million's gravy (my dad's mom) was always smooth, but Mom couldn't seem to make anything but lumpy gravy. I'd tell Mom that the lumps were the best part. I was pretty sure gravy was intended to be lumpy.

There was always bacon on biscuits and gravy day. Not a crazy amount. If you were lucky, you'd get two half-slices. Mom could make a package of bacon last longer than anyone I know. I never allowed my bacon to touch the gravy. Bacon was carefully stacked on the side of the plate. I enjoyed little bites between biscuits, but never mixed the two.

Finally, when the plate was clean of gravy and the bacon gone, I'd have that final biscuit. This one I'd top with Mom's homemade preserves. Usually strawberry or peach jelly. It was a dessert biscuit. A perfect end to the first meal of the day.

Breakfasts around here these days tend to be fruit shakes and granola. We go through an occasional oatmeal craze. Biscuits and gravy are rare, but do happen on the occasional special morning, a holiday or maybe somebody's birthday. One of the kids will sometimes make a tray of biscuits, usually inspired, I think, by a particularly tasty looking jar of jam brought home from the farmers market.

Morning Lingers, a biscuit memory I wrote several years ago.

1 comment:

bs said...

Yes those biscuits were the best!
Memories as I couldn't eat them now.
My how time changes things...