If you are planning to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a traditional Irish meal, chances are it will be corned beef and cabbage. If that’s your pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, stick with the classic. But if you are feeling lucky and want to try something new for March 17, you should go with this Irish “bangers and biscuits.”
This is a blend of an American classic — biscuits and gravy — with several nods to Irish flavors. The buttermilk biscuits with Irish white cheddar and scallion are a fluffier, lighter version of soda bread. They have perfect, soft layers on the inside and just a touch of buttery crispness on the outside. The scallion and Irish cheddar are both additions that will make your mouth happy.
The sausage is named after an Irish and English classic called “bangers” that have mild flavors reminiscent of bratwurst. The meal of bangers and mash is very common across the pond. Bangers got their unique name when sausages during World War I contained fillers like water and breadcrumbs, which often caused the casings to burst when the soldiers cooked them.
You will be safe from busting sausages with this homemade sausage recipe since no casings are required. The key to making the best sausage is buying some freshly ground pork from your local butcher. You are looking for around 20% fat in the mixture, otherwise your sausage will be too dry and lack flavor.
Even if your menu planning is full for St. Paddy’s Day, this is a great breakfast or brunch menu that is sure to please a lot of palates in your life — Irish or not!
Biscuits and Bangers
Serves: 6-8 people
2 cups flour
1 stick of butter plus 1 tbsp for brushing tops
½ teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons baking powder
1 cup buttermilk
½ teaspoon kosher salt
2 chopped scallions
3 ounces Irish cheddar
1 pound freshly ground pork
2 sage leaves
Leaves from two sprigs of thyme
1 ¼ tsp kosher salt
1 tsp onion powder
¼ tsp of white pepper
¼ tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
2 cups whole milk or 2% milk
Salt and Pepper
Optional: More scallion for topping
The one thing the biscuits and the sausage have in common is you want both of them cold as you prepare them. For the sausage, mince the sage and thyme leaves and add to the pork in a large bowl. Add the rest of the seasoning and mix well. Put back into the refrigerator until it is time to cook the sausage.
For the biscuits, combine your flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder into a large bowl. Cube the cold butter into ¼-inch pieces and place into the dry ingredients. With a pastry cutter, a fork, or your fingers, smash the butter into the dry ingredients until you don’t have any large butter pieces in the mixture. Place back in the refrigerator. Take out your Irish cheddar and scallion. Finely chop your scallions and cube your cheese into pieces no larger than ¼-inch cubes.
Take out your biscuit mixture and cold buttermilk from the refrigerator. Add the scallion and cheddar to the mixture first and incorporate well. Add 1 cup of buttermilk and gently incorporate with a fork until the dry ingredients are one mass. Add a little bench flour to your counter top, put the biscuit mixture on your counter top, and add a bit more bench flour to the top.
With a rolling pin, flatten the mixture out to about 1 ½-inch high, and then fold in half and roll once again to 1 ½-inch thick. Repeat this 5-6 times, adding topical flour as needed to keep it from sticking to your rolling pin and the counter. This process is adding the flaky layers to the biscuits. With a 3-inch round biscuit cutter, you should be able to get six clean rounds. You can get another 1-2 biscuits by pressing the scraps together and using the biscuit cutter. Place on a parchment-lined baking tray. Put them back in the refrigerator for 30 minutes while you preheat your oven to 450 F.
Melt the 1 tablespoon of butter and brush the biscuit tops before they go into the oven for 15-16 minutes, until the tops are golden brown. Brush the tops once again with any remaining melted butter.
Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a large sauce pan on medium heat. Once it’s melted, add the 3 tablespoons of flour and get it all coated in the flour. Allow it to cook for 2 minutes while stirring. Add a 1/2 cup of the milk while whisking vigorously. Once there are no lumps and the contents thicken, add the rest of the milk and whisk again until smooth. Allow the mixture to simmer until it thickens. Add salt and plenty of freshly cracked black pepper to taste.
Form patties with the banger sausage that aren’t too thick and are a bit larger than the circumference of the biscuits. Fry on medium heat, until each side is golden brown. To assemble, cut a biscuit in half, place a sausage patty on the bottom half and cover with as much gravy as you like. You can put more chopped scallion on top of the gravy. Eat with a fork and knife.