At the recent Music To Your Mouth festival at Palmetto Bluff, we sat in on a cooking lesson led by Nashville chef Tyler Brown of The Capitol Grille and moderated by the great John T. Edge, director of the Southern Foodways Alliance. Country ham and biscuits were destined to make an appearance, but Brown’s dish, inspired by renowned journalist and Southern food specialist John Egerton, turns a staple dish into a party-friendly canapé.
When you roll biscuit dough through a pasta roller many times (hence, the “beaten”) it won’t rise nearly as much, but you’ll get those wonderful flaky layers all the same. As for the pâté, says Brown, “It’s the easiest preparation of all time and the perfect use for country ham scraps. If you make this and then try to go back to deviled ham, you’re plumb outta luck.”
“Beaten biscuit dough is forgiving, don’t think you can’t pull it off,” adds John T. “Besides, you never use that thing for pasta. Start using it for biscuit dough.” He also recommends (or, rather, insists) that one use Duke’s mayonnaise in this recipe. It’s a Southern tradition.
- 7 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 5 tablespoons sugar
- 1 cup lard (use bacon fat)
- 1 1/2 cups half and half
- 1/4 - 1/2 cup cream
- 1 cup country ham scraps
- 1/2 - 1 cup mayonnaise
For the biscuits:
- Sift dry ingredients together.
- Add the lard, half and half and cream.
- Wrap and let sit for a few hours in the refrigerator.
- Roll in pasta machine on largest setting. 300 for friends, 500 for family and 1000 for the president.
- Cut out biscuits using a small cutter.
- Bake at 325°F for 20 minutes or until lightly golden brown.
For the ham pâté:
- Place the country ham scraps in a food processor.
- Pulse the country ham scraps until they are small pieces.
- Add 1/2 cup of mayo and continue to pulse.
- Add more mayo as needed, until the mixture comes together into a pâté.
- Serve on the biscuits.
Find more country ham recipes on Food Republic: