Friday, March 12, 2010

The Southern Belles' Midwest Invasion

I recently traveled to Kansas City with four friends.  One of us is from Kansas City originally, and her parents were kind enough to host us for several days.  To show our gratitude, we took care of dinner one night.  Our hosts were unfamiliar with Southern cuisine, so we decided to introduce some of our culture to the Midwest.
The girls hard at work

Though our meal was not in any way Latin, it was too good not to share!  Thus, I am pleased to announce a new column on this blog: Southern Comforts.

Any good dinner party begins with bread (that's what a dinner party is after all: breaking bread with friends).  What better bread to choose for a Southern dinner party than biscuits?  And sweet potato biscuits at that!  When served with honey butter, these quickbreads are always a huge hit.

Sweet Potato Biscuits
Source: adapted from Paula Deen


2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
4 heaping tablespoons sugar
8 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1-1/2 cups mashed cooked sweet potatoes (about 3 medium-sized potatoes)
1/2 cup (1 stick) softened margarine
2 tablespoons skim milk


Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Sift together dry ingredients.  In a separate, larger bowl, mix sweet potatoes and butter.  Add the dry mixture to the potato mixture and work to make a soft dough.  Add milk gradually.  Use two tablespoons to create 1-inch drop biscuits on greased cookie sheets.  Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the tops start to show a little brown.

Yield: 42 biscuits.  Number of biscuits left over for the trip back to Atlanta: 0.

Honey Butter
Source: adapted from Alton Brown


1/2 pound softened butter (you just can't do margarine with this one...sorry fellow health freaks!)
2 tablespoons
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


Place the butter into a large bowl and beat at a low speed.  Use a spatula to keep scraping butter down off the sides of the bowl.  Increase the speed to medium and add remaining ingredients.  Beat well until combined, about 5 minutes.

If you have a cookie press, place half of the butter mixture into the press and use the star-shaped attachment.  This should make about 6 stars.  Repeat with remaining mixture.

If you do not have a cookie press, experiment!  You can shape the mixture into logs (like store bought butter) with parchment paper, or maybe form it into a thin sheet and use a cookie cutter to create fun shapes!

No matter what shape you turn your butter into, refrigerate for at least 2 hours to allow for it to harden.

Tune in tomorrow for more dishes from our fabulous dinner party!


  1. Mmmmm, I love sweet potatoes, especially sweet potato fries. My boyfriend says he doesn't care for them, unfortunately so I'll have to eat these all myself!

  2. That's okay! They're not as bad for you as regular biscuits...sweet potatoes have lots of fiber!