Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Red Lobster Cheddar Bay Biscuits.....Revealed. Nailed it!!!!

Red Lobster Cheddar Bay biscuits are heavenly.   People have been looking for the recipe for a long time and as the Red Lobster web site says......the recipe is a secret.

Sure....they tantalize with some tips  "we will share a couple of well-kept secrets for making our much-loved biscuit: do not over knead the dough and make sure you use baking soda as one of the ingredients."  

There are a lot of recipes out there that try to emulate the product.  Most use Bisquick or some version of that type of biscuit.  But.....they are wrong.

Reverse engineering the product, I realized that one of the main ingredients was missing from all of these recipes and that Red Lobster has been lying to us for years.  I don't blame them.....the biscuits are to die for.   What is the missing ingredient?   YEAST.  The texture of the rolls shows that they are clearly yeast raised, yet they do have the properties of baking soda and baking powder raised rolls.  

What type of rolls have these characteristics......Angel Biscuits....So I went back to one of my old cookbooks and brought out a recipe and tweaked.  Messing around in the kitchen, doing what I like to do.....cook.  I have nailed it.  

Here is now revealed the super secret recipe for Cheddar Bay Biscuits from Dust Bunny Queen


Cheddar Bay Biscuits

1 package of yeast or about 2 1/4 tsp
1/2 cup warm water   
4 1/2 cups of flour (I use unbleached all purpose)
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp table salt
1/2 cup shortening
2 cups buttermilk (bring to room temperature)
1/2 cup coarsely grated sharp cheddar cheese

1/4 to 1/3 cup melted butter
garlic powder
parsley flakes
kosher salt.

Mix the yeast into the warm water in a small bowl or glass measuring cup and set aside in a medium warm place while preparing the rest of the recipe.   I use yeast from a jar that I keep in the fridge and not packets, so I am guessing that the 2 1/4 tsp is the amount of a package.

Spoon the flour into a measuring cup.  Don't just dip or scoop it out because then you will have compacted flour.  You want it to be light and fluffy.  In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and mix with a whisk to combine.

Cut in the shortening until the mixture is crumbly. I just use my fingers to combine and lightly rub the mixture together between my palms.   Toss in the cheddar cheese and mix into the dry flour mixture with a spoon.  You might want more cheese, but be careful.  Too much cheese will make the biscuits heavy in texture.

Stir in the buttermilk and yeast water mixture with a wooden spoon until mixed. The buttermilk is better warm or room temperature than cold from the fridge.  You don't want to kill the yeast. Don't beat or over-mix otherwise it will be tough.  This must be what they mean by don't over knead.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour.

Melt the butter and mix with about 1/4 tsp garlic powder or garlic granules and some parsley flakes and set aside.

Pre heat oven to 450.  Grease a cookie sheet or use cooking spray.  Drop by 1/3 cup measures onto the greased pan.  I just eyeballed it, so I'm guessing that it is about 1/3 cup.  I imagine that the cooks at Red Lobster use something like an ice cream scoop so that the biscuits are all the same size.

Brush the tops of the biscuits with the melted butter and lightly sprinkle with kosher salt if you like. ....or not if you don't want the extra salt.   Bake for 12 minutes or until nicely golden on top.  Brush with more butter while still warm if desired......I do!


You may need to experiment with the amount of flour since brands of flour differ in the amount of moisture that they have and you may end up with different textures of dough depending on the brand you are using and the time of year you are cooking.   No problems......just eat the mistakes and try again.

Next time I cook this I might use butter instead of shortening or even try lard.

Also I may use fresh garlic sauteed in the butter instead of dried garlic.

Fresh chives may be nice instead of dried parsley flakes.

My husband gets so irritated with me when I insist on tweaking the recipes.  I say...
Hey, if I wasn't tweaking the recipes you would have THIS ONE!!....Have another biscuit."


Martha Marshall said...

This is an amazing coincidence. I just went through almost the same exact exercise 2 days ago! Wish I'd found your post when I was poking around the web for a solution. I already knew I was making angel biscuits, but then got the bright idea to convert them to Cheddar Bay biscuits. But I didn't know until you mentioned it that yeast must have been the secret ingredient in their version!! Mine are good (tested one this morning) but we put waaaaaaay more cheese in. After all, you can never have too much cheese, right?

Thanks for sharing your great research!

Anonymous said...

You should share this recipe and post it on food.com

Anonymous said...

No offense. But for someone who claims to have nailed the recipe, I don't see a photo.