Christmas has arrived! I’ve opened gifts, I’m sitting by a fire, and my belly is so full from Christmas breakfast it is hard to move. I may have eaten just a little too much, but it’s hard not to overindulge. In my family, holiday meals follow strict traditions. There is always a juicy beef tenderloin for Christmas dinner and breakfast always includes my mother’s over-the-top adaptation of Moravian sugarcake. Each part of the meal is sacred and it’s not Christmas (or Thanksgiving, or Easter) without the meals that have become so much a part of that holiday’s tradition.
So what makes up a Sawyer family Christmas breakfast? There is lots of strong coffee and tart Texas ruby-red grapefruits (a wonderful gift from the in-laws!). Scrambled eggs are loaded with cheddar cheese, creamy grits with milk and butter, and there is plenty of Moravian sugarcake and country ham with red-eye gravy.
When I saw Molly Wizenberg’s article on sweet potato biscuits in December’s Bon Appetit, I immediately ripped out the recipe with the hopes of baking a batch soon. Several weeks later, I finally got around to it and my only regret is that I waited so long. Slightly denser than a regular biscuit, these sweet potato biscuits are mighty fine and perfect for the holidays (at least what’s left of them!).
The recipe in Bon Appetit was for small, bite-size biscuits, but frankly small biscuits depress me so I went big. I like biscuits that require savoring that you can’t gulp down in one quick bite. That being said, a petite version of these biscuits with a little ham would be a smashing hit at a cocktail party. If you go that route, just be sure to make several batches. They’ll go quickly!
I’m trying to savor this holiday season, but the days keep slipping away. My job at the catering company is keeping me busy with holiday parties and I’ve been fortunate enough to have a packed calendar in regards to cooking classes. Despite not enough hours in the day, things are good. Well, good except for in my kitchen.
With all this work, I’ve had precious little time to play around in the kitchen this holiday season. There have been no afternoons spent baking cookies and far too few special holiday meals. Which is why when I found myself with a free hour this past weekend, I promptly baked a loaf of cranberry orange bread.