Serves 4 to 6
For the chicken and biscuits:
- 2tablespoons fat (bacon fat, olive oil, butter, or schmaltz)
- 3carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1sweet potato, peeled and chopped
- 1large onion, chopped
- 2tablespoons butter
- 2tablespoons all-purpose flour
- Splash of white wine
- 2cups heated chicken broth (the poaching liquid works fine here, too)
- 3cups poached chicken, chopped or shredded
- 1teaspoon fresh chopped rosemary
- 1teaspoon fresh thyme
- 1/2teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
- Fresh ground salt and pepper
- Melted butter, to top
In a heavy-bottomed pan, melt the fat over medium heat. In it, sauté the carrots, sweet potato, and onion until just tender. Remove the vegetables and return the pan to the heat.
Melt butter over the heat and then add the flour, whisking constantly until the flour darkens and takes on a nutty smell. Add a splash of white wine and whisk until most of the additional liquid has been absorbed. Then, one ladle at a time, add the warmed chicken broth and whisk until thickened. You should end up with roughly cups of gravy. You can make it thicker or thinner as you prefer, but you want enough liquid to allow the biscuits to absorb some of the delicious chicken goo (technical term) as they cook.
Add in the chicken, cooked vegetables, herbs, and spices and stir to combine. Adjust salt and pepper as needed. Allow the filling to cook on low heat for a while to get the flavors all cozy together, about 20 minutes (or the amount of time it takes to make and drink a hot toddy) but let your conscience be your guide here. Add more broth if it starts to get too thick. If you’re making this ahead you can stop here and store or freeze.
Preheat the oven to 450° F. Drop the biscuit dough on top of the filling in 1/4 cup scoops. Feel free to fill in the cracks with the scraps—this is comfort food, so looks are secondary. Use up all of that biscuit-y goodness!
Cook for about 14 to 17 minutes or until the tops get all golden. Remove and brush the top of the biscuits with some melted butter. Let cool for a few minutes before serving. And, if I may be so bold as to suggest, leave a pot holder or towel over the scorching hot handle so that you don’t burn yourself when you return to serve. I only mention it because I burned the tar out of my hand approximately two dozen times before I finally learned to leave something over the handle as a sort of red flag.
For the drop biscuit dough:
- 2cups all-purpose flour
- 2teaspoons baking powder
- 1teaspoon sugar
- 1/2teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4teaspoon salt
- 8tablespoons butter, melted then cooled, plus 2 additional tablespoons for brushing on top
- 1cup buttermilk, chilled
In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Add the butter to the buttermilk and combine until it turns clumpy. Using a spatula, combine the wet and dry ingredients only until they just comes together, handling as little as possible.