Southern-Style Greens and Laminated Bacon Biscuits #MoviesandMunchies
This month Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm is hosting our Movies & Munchies group. To celebrate National Women's Month, we are watching Hidden Figures.
I watched this movie when it first came out and I remember thoroughly enjoying it. So, I was excited to watch it again. Hidden Figures tells the story of three unsung heroes of NASA, delicately balancing a racial drama with the history of the space race. Not only are the three heroes women, they are black women: Dorothy Vaughn (played by Octavia Spencer), the unofficial supervisor of the West Area Computers Division, a group of nearly three dozen black women doing calculations for the spacecrafts; Mary Jackson (played by Janelle Monáe) an aspiring engineer; and Katherine Goble (played by Taraji P. Henson), a mathematician whose abilities are prodigious and almost unparalleled.
This is a story of triumph over racial segregation and workplace sexism. You may be familiar with the Friendship 7 mission and John Glenn; but you are unlikely to have ever heard of these three impressive women.
In one scene Goble explodes at her boss Al Harrison (played by Kevin Costner) who was questioning where she goes for 40 minutes at a time. "There are no colored bathrooms in this building, or any building outside the West Campus, which is half a mile away. Did you know that? I have to walk to Timbuktu just to relieve myself! And I can't use one of the handy bikes. Picture that, Mr. Harrison. My uniform, skirt below the knees and my heels and simple necklace pearls. Well, I don't own pearls. Lord knows you don't pay the colored enough to afford pearls! And I work like a dog day and night, living on coffee from a pot none of you want to touch! So, excuse me if I have to go to the restroom a few times a day."
Harrison goes to the West Campus with a sledge hammer and batters down the 'Colored Women's Bathroom' sign.
"Here at NASA we all pee the same color." - Harrison
Though there isn't a lot of food in the movie, there is some. There are church picnics, family dinners, and one girls' night where the ladies are drinking some kind of hootch in Vaughn's home. My post was inspired by the first - a church picnic when Mary and Levi are serving their children. We know there were greens because the kids objected; I opted to share Southern-Style Greens with some Laminated Bacon Biscuits.
While this is usually made with collard greens, I used what I had.
12 cups greens (I used 6 cups Tuscan kale, torn into bits; 4 cups baby kale, 2 cups spinach)
1 Tablespoon olive oil plus more olive oil for serving
½ cup finely diced onions
1 Tablespoon garlic, peeled and pressed
½ teaspoon Cajun seasoning
1 to 2 cups chicken broth
3 ounces capocolllo, diced (you can used cooked bacon)
1 Tablespoon vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
filé powder, also known as gumbo filé, optional
In a large, heavy bottom pot, heat olive oil. Add onions and sauté until softened and translucent. Stir in garlic and seasoning. Cook until fragrant, approximately 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the capocollo, then pour in 1 cup of broth. Bring to a boil.
Add in the kale. Stir until it turns a bright emerald green. Add in the baby kale and stir until wilted. Add in the spinach and stir until wilted. If it's too dry, add in the remaining broth 1/4 cup at a time.
Cover and cook greens for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring regularly.
Once done, stir and taste the broth and the greens. Stir in vinegar and season to taste with salt and pepper. Add in filé powder, if using. Drizzle with more olive oil. Serve immediately, but this holds well to serve later as well.
Laminated Bacon Biscuits
Drop biscuits are easy and delicious, but I love the layers of laminated biscuits. These have candied bacon folded in to take them over to the top.
1/4 cup organic granulated sugar
3 Tablespoons warm water
2 teaspoons (1 envelope) active dry yeast
5 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, cold and cubed
2 cups whole plain buttermilk (you can use yogurt, instead)
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, cold
light oil for greasing the bowl (I used canola)
4 candied bacon strips, coarsely chopped
In a small mixing bowl, stir together sugar, 3 Tablespoons warm water, and yeast. Let stand until mixture is bloomed and foamy, approximately 5 minutes.
In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Using your hands or a pastry blender, cut in cold, cubed butter until mixture is crumbly. Add yeast mixture and buttermilk, stirring until dry ingredients are just moistened.
Knead by hand a few times until dough comes together. Oil a large mixing bowl and place dough in bowl, turning so that it's completely covered in oil. Cover with a clean dish towel and let rise in a warm spot until raised and puffy, approximately 90 minutes to 2 hours.
While the dough rises, pound the 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter into a rectangle and wrap in parchment paper.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
Turn out dough onto a lightly floured piece of parchment. Gently roll dough into an 18x12-inch rectangle. Unwrap butter and place in center of dough. Add crumbled bacon. Fold dough into thirds, like a letter.
Roll dough to 1-1/2" thick. Rotate dough 90 degrees, and fold dough again into thirds, like a letter. Roll dough to a rectangle at 1-1/2" thickness, again.
Cut dough into squares and gently separate the biscuits. Transfer to prepared sheet.
Bake until golden brown, approximately 15 to 20 minutes. Let cool on pan for 5 minutes.
That's a wrap on my March #MoviesandMunchies offering. I think we'll be watching Eat, Pray, Love in April. Stay tuned.