1/2 cup butter (slightly softened)
1/2 can 100% pumpkin
2 tsp sugar (any kind should suffice)
1 tbsp (raw) honey
1 tsp vanilla* (*see below)
1/2 tsp ginger*
1/4 tsp salt*
1/2 tsp nutmeg*
1 tsp ground coriander*
1 tsp baking soda*
1 cup self-rising flour
1 1/4 cups flour
Pumpkins… are not in season. In fact, given how badly I’ve been hoping for spring to arrive, I could make the argument that pumpkins are decidedly out of season. But y’know what’s always in season? Canned pumpkin. Probably costs more during the summer, but can always be considered “in style” for the sake of this post. At least, this is what I’m proposing to validate my pumpkin experiment the other night.
As is often the case, I’m not so much about the umm… planning part of what I intend to cook. There have been (many) times where I began making—I guess you could call it “something”—by putting either butter or flour or sugar into a bowl, and then just throwing more stuff that sounded good together into the bowl, until eventually I decided I’d added enough things, and then cooked it for what I deemed to be an appropriate amount of time at an appropriate temperature based on stickiness and volume. This wasn’t exactly one of those times, but it was kind of a tossup between cookies and biscuits until I realized how little sugar I had available. Solidly moved into the biscuits category. And this is what happened:
I put the butter, pumpkin, the sugar, and the honey into a big bowl, and then I forked it together until it was a pretty homogenous mixture. I then added the egg and vanilla, and forked that in. Things were looking pretty sticky and, frankly, modestly delicious. (It also tasted moderately delicious.) At this point, I did NOT sift the remaining dry ingredients together. Because who has a sifter? I added the self-rising flour (this was purely experimental—I’ve never used it before, so I can’t say for certain what kind of difference it did or did not make), and mixed it in with the fork. Then I added half a cup of regular flour, threw the spices and salt on top, and then added the other half cup of flour. And then I mixed it all together with the fork.
Around this time, I preheated the oven. My dough was fairly sticky, but tasted pretty solid. Not too sweet, and if I made it again, I might consider a little more of any (or all) of the spices I initially added. So I added maybe another 1/4 to 1/3 cup of flour, just to make sure my forearms were fully exercised for the day, and mixed that in by hand. Everything seemed in order and, since I’m more of a drop-biscuit kind of person than a precisely-rolled-biscuit kind of person, I made maybe 2 1/2” round balls of biscuit dough and spread them out 8 per cookie sheet on parchment paper. They don’t expand a lot during baking, but I hate it when things mush together, so I usually air on the side of extra space.
By now, the oven was quite warm, so I threw them in the oven and cooked them at 350F until they were done. I would guess about 14 minutes, but that is based on an oven/timer combo from the 70’s, so how the heck would I know how long something is really supposed to cook for. This recipe made about 18 biscuits, which sufficed to feed my neighbors and I three each, which we promptly ate with butter. (If creme fraiche is in the house, I would recommend that. What a snob I am.) In between mouthfuls of moist, happy biscuit, we discussed at (biscuit-bite-punctuated) length how important it is to eat biscuits when warm. In light of this discussion, I would recommend eating them warm.
*these measurements seem to indicate the usage of a spoon. They are, however, merely good estimates based on my time spent in the kitchen measuring things with a measuring spoon. They are used to make you feel more comfortable. Take them with a grain of salt. But then subtract the grain of salt, because a ton of salt isn’t really that good for you.*