Mesquite Biscuits with Roasted Squash Butter
Mesquite is a desert bush thats known for its firewood. But the plant also produces a bean that was a staple for Native North and Central Americans for thousands of years. Unlike most beans, mesquite beans release their sugars slowly into the bloodstream, giving you steady energy throughout the day. This recipe calls for mesquite flour, which is made from the ground beans and pods. It has a uniquely sweet, almost caramel-like flavor that gives these biscuits a taste unlike anything you have ever tried before. You can order the flour by mail (see p. 64); or replace it with an extra half cup each of spelt flour and yellow cornmeal.
- Roasted Squash Butter (November '00/p. 68)
- In large saucepan fitted with steamer basket, bring 2 inches water to a boil over high heat. Add sweet potatoes, cover and cook until tender, about 13 minutes. Set sweet potatoes aside to cool to room temperature.
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper; lightly grease paper. In large bowl, mix together both flours, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, salt and pepper. (Or sift together for fluffier, lighter biscuits.) Set aside.
- In blender, combine oil, maple syrup, vinegar, cooled sweet potatoes and 1 cup water. Blend on high until smooth. Add sweet potato mixture to flour mixture along with rosemary and gently stir with a wooden spoon just until dough forms. Do not overmix.
- Lightly grease 1/4 cup measuring cup and use it to portion out 24 rounds, regreasing cup as necessary. Place rounds on prepared baking sheets, spacing at least 2 inches apart. Lightly press some pumpkin seeds into top of each.
- center of biscuit comes out clean, 10 to 13 minutes. Place baking sheets on wire racks and cool biscuits 10 minutes. Serve warm with squash butter.