The Ultimate Southern Breakfast aka Biscuits & Gravy
Food is home, food is comfort.
When I moved from Tennessee to New York City, there was one meal, a breakfast meal, that I missed the most from down South – biscuits and gravy. Thankfully a friend from Ohio was willing to sacrifice her waistline with me and we made it our mission to try all the biscuits and gravy the city had to offer to find the one that reminded us most of home.
In fact, the quest for the best biscuits and gravy isn’t over. I still have a list more than 10-deep of biscuit and gravy spots to try in NYC, I always make it a point to eat the real deal when I get back down South and now, with Humble Pie, I’m hoping to share my biscuit and gravy love with Berlin.
So, what the heck are biscuits and gravy anyways? I digress a bit for my Berlin friends and anyone else that’s not heard of this Southern breakfast dish.
The foundation of biscuits and gravy is, naturally, the biscuit.
Biscuits are a quick-rising bread made with flour, buttermilk and butter. Baking powder is used as a rising agent. Before baking powder was common, the dough was beaten – several hundred whacks-worth – to incorporate air pockets into the dough before baking. Biscuits in the South are famously fluffy thanks to the soft, winter wheat that’s grown in the region. Not to fear, a deliciously soft biscuit can be reproduced with the flour that’s commonly available in Germany (Type 405)!
Biscuits don’t contain egg and only a scant amount of sugar, so they are neutral in taste and perfect for slathering with butter, fresh preserves or honey or you can use them to make a sandwich. Most folks eat them at breakfast, but you can eat them anytime of day.
Now to the gravy. The gravy we are talking about here is similar to a bechamel sauce. You start with a roux made of melted fat – typically pan drippings from cooked breakfast sausage or bacon – and flour and then cook it with milk to form a creamy, thick white sauce. It’s generously seasoned with pepper and then smothered over your warm buttermilk biscuit.
At Humble Pie, we make our buttermilk biscuits from scratch and prepare our own “breakfast sausage” using ground pork from Kumpel & Keule mixed with pure maple syrup, fennel, sage and marjoram. For our veggie friends, we do a delicious and creamy mushroom gravy.
Dreaming of biscuits and gravy for your next breakfast yet? Check our events section to see where you can try this classic Southern dish next!
Your chief biscuit and gravy inspector,