A modern Las Vegas style biscuits n gravy breakfast!
Home made tea leaf and spice smoked salmon is easy to make, but the kitchen must have adequate ventilation. If you have an outdoor char grill and the weather is nice, then the salmon can be smoked outdoors. I only smoked one salmon filet portion, so the smoke was manageable in my kitchen.
Cold smoking only involves smoke with no heat. Hot smoking involves heat. The hot smoking method was used for this recipe, so the smoked salmon was fully cooked and it had a nice tasting smoked flavor.
Tea leaves and whole dried spice seeds with peppercorns were mixed with coarse kosher salt. This created a very light smoke flavor for the salmon!
Buttermilk biscuits are an old fashioned treat for breakfast. I had to make a batch at chef school today and the school recipe turned out to be the same as my own recipe, so it was like making the biscuits that I usually make at home or in restaurants. The chef school only needed 25 biscuits, so I made the biscuits by hand, instead of with a mixer.
The biscuits turned out to have a perfect biscuit texture and I got compliments from an executive chef teacher that rarely pays compliments. That teacher said that they were honestly the best biscuits that he ever had! The teacher was from Chicago and Chicago is a biscuit eating town, so the compliment was really solid!
No matter what method is used to make milk gravy for biscuits, a milk gravy is still a bechamel sauce. The full French step of making a studded onion pique is not necessary for most bechamel sauce applications. It definitely is not necessary for making a standard bechamel milk gravy for a breakfast item that will be flavored with an exotic smoked salmon. The tea and spice smoked salmon has plenty of flavor of its own.
This tea and spice smoked salmon buttermilk biscuits and gravy entree should appeal to those who like milk gravies for breakfast, but do not like sausage milk gravies. Even with salmon instead of sausage, this is still a very satisfying full plate of heavy breakfast food. This breakfast entree will stick to the ribs!
Smoked Salmon Baste:
Place 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil into a small mixing bowl.
Add 2 pinches of ground anatto.
Add 2 pinches of cayenne pepper.
Add 2 pinches of paprika.
Add 2 pinches of kosher salt.
Add 2 pinches of black pepper.
Add 1 pinch of thyme.
Add 1 teaspoon of sugar.
Stir the ingredients together.
Remove the bones from a 6 to 8 ounce salmon filet. Leave the skin attached to the filet.
Brush the salmon with the seasoned basting oil.
Set the salmon filet aside for a few minutes.
Tea Leaf and Spice Smoked Salmon Smoking Mixture:
Place 4 tablespoons of coarse kosher salt into a small mixing bowl.
Add 3 tablespoons of tea leaves.
Add 1 tablespoon of black peppercorns.
Add 1 tablespoon of pink peppercorns.
Add 1 tablespoon of coriander seed.
Add 1 tablespoon of cumin seed.
Add 1/2 tablespoon of fennel seed.
Add 1/2 tablespoon of mustard seed.
Stir the ingredients together.
Tea Leaf and Spice Smoked Salmon:
It is easy to assemble a small smoking box with ordinary old worn out kitchen items. Once used for smoking, the items of the smoking box should only be used for smoking. An old worn out pot makes a great smoking box!
The smoking mixture is placed on the bottom of small cheap pot or a worn out pot. (Never use a good pot or a new pot for this smoking method!)
A couple of metal spacers of some kind, like old rusty ring molds or a metal coat hanger that has the paint stripped off are used to elevate a wire screen roasting rack above the spices and tea leaves.
Set the wire screen in place about 1 inch above the smoking mixture, so it is propped on top of the metal spacers.
Place the basted salmon filet on the roasting rack.
Place a lid on the pot. (The lid should not fit tightly. There should be a tiny space for the excess smoke to escape.)
Place the smoking pot over a burner that is set to medium heat or directly on medium hot embers in a char grill.
Allow the salmon to smoke undisturbed for 7 minutes.
Check the salmon for doneness.
Continue smoking or baking with the home made smoker, even if the smoke is exhausted, till the salmon becomes fully cooked.
Note: The home made little smoking box will work as an oven as well as a smoker. Only some smoke is needed for flavor. The salmon does not need to be heavily smoked all the way through the baking process in the hot smoking box! After the smoke is gone, the salmon will slowly cook as if it were in an oven.
Remove the salmon from the smoking box after it is fully cooked and smoked.
Set the Tea Leaf and Spice Smoked Salmon aside to cool.
Note: For the home made smoker, just scrape the carbon black residue out of the pot. Sanitize with soapy water and rinse. The home made smoker can be used any time that a small amount of meat needs to be smoked!
This recipe makes several biscuits. The amount of biscuits depends on the size of the biscuits. Extra biscuits can be frozen for later meals.
Place 2 cups of all purpose flour into a bowl.
Add 1 tablespoon of baking powder.
Add 1 small pinch of baking soda.
Add 1 teaspoon of sea salt.
Sift the ingredients together into a mixing bowl.
Add 3 ounces of cold butter that is cut into 1/2" cube pieces.
Cut the butter into the flour with a fork or a baker's cutting tool, till the flour looks like it has been riced to a small pea size.
Add 1 cup of buttermilk.
Gently stir, till the ingredients just barely combine.
Only knead till a dough is barely formed. Only knead the dough, till it holds together. (Do not over mix biscuit dough!)
Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface, till it is 1" thick.
Use a 2 1/2" to 3 1/2" round biscuit cutter to cut biscuits or cut 2 1/2" squares. Cut several biscuits.
Combine the scraps and roll them out again to cut a few more biscuits.
Place the biscuits on a parchment paper lined baking pan or a baking pan that is brushed with melted butter.
Brush the tops of the biscuits with milk.
Bake in a 425 degree oven, till the biscuits become fully cooked and lightly toasted on the tops. (About 10 to 15 minutes)
Remove the biscuits from the oven and let them cool to a serving temperature.
Keep the biscuits warm on a stove top.
Tea and Spice Smoked Salmon Gravy:
A white gravy is a very basic bechamel sauce!
Heat a sauce pot over medium/medium low heat.
Add 5 pats of unsalted butter.
Add an equal amount of flour, while constantly stirring, to form a roux.
Stir till the roux combines and till the roux becomes a white color.
Add 1 1/2 cups of milk, while stirring.
Add sea salt and white pepper.
Add 1 very tiny pinch of nutmeg.
Stir the white gravy as it heats and thickens.
After the white gravy comes to a gentle boil, reduce the temperature to low heat.
Stir the white gravy occasionally as it simmers.
Simmer and reduce the white gravy, if it is too thick. Add milk if the white gravy is too thin. The white gravy should be a medium thin bechamel cream sauce consistency.
Cut the tea and spice smoked salmon filet into medium bite size pieces. Separate the better looking pieces and save them for later in the recipe. Keep the nice looking pieces of the tea and spice smoked salmon warm on a stove top. Any rough looking pieces or crumbled pieces will be added to the white gravy!
Add the crumbled or uneven pieces of the tea and spice smoked salmon to the white gravy.
Keep the sausage gravy warm over very low heat for 5 minutes, so the flavors meld.
Tea Leaf and Spice Smoked Salmon Buttermilk Biscuits n Gravy:
All of the ingredients for this entree should be warm or hot at this time! Biscuits and gravy is basically just an assembly style entree.
Split 3 biscuits in half and place the bottoms halves of the biscuits in a row across a plate.
Spoon some of the tea and spice smoked salmon gravy across the biscuit bottoms.
Lean the top half of each biscuit against the biscuit bottom halves on the plate.
Generously spoon the tea and spiced salmon gravy between the biscuit tops and partially over the biscuit tops. Parts of the bare biscuit tops should be exposed, so the part of nicely toasted biscuit tops can be seen!
There should be plenty of the tea and spice smoked biscuit gravy on the plate.
Cascade the reserved nice looking bite size nuggets of the tea and spice smoked salmon over the white gravy and biscuits.
Sprinkle some very thin sliced green onion top over the white gravy.
Serve with a grilled tomato and a home fry potato of your choice. I have posted many grilled tomato and home fry recipes in this blog. The home fries in the pictures were flavored with thin julienne sliced jalapeno and paprika.
This fancy biscuits and gravy recipe tastes like no other! The tea and spice smoked salmon has a very appealing breakfast flavor that is nice with a white gravy. The better the biscuits, the better this breakfast entree will be. Tea and Spice Smoked Salmon Buttermilk Biscuits and Gravy is tasty and hearty! Yum! ... Shawna