I can't remember the first time I ever tasted a Concord grape. I'm not sure we have them on the West Coast, so maybe it was when I moved to NYC. Maybe I picked them up at the Union Square Greenmarket unaware of the taste explosion I was about to experience. Who knows? But, I do know that there is no better grape than the Concord grape. Sure, those seeds are pesky and if you're the type that spits out the skins, that's a pain, too. (Note, I am not that type.) Even so, the flavor of a Concord grape is like the sweetest & grapiest grape candy, but natural. It sort of defies reality. It tastes like candy, but it's better than candy.
Anyways, we get Concord grapes once or twice a season from our CSA and they blow my mind every time. We eat half of them on the way home and usually enjoy the rest plain for desserts. Somehow this year though, we ended up with extra. Impossible to believe, but true. So, I actually had to look for a recipe that uses Concord grapes. It turns out, there are a lot that look crazy tasty. I settled on one from a tried-and-true source, Jennifer Perillo of In Jennie's Kitchen. Perillo is one of a few food bloggers who I aspire to be.
And, this Concord grape "biscuffin" recipe is no different. I adapted it a bit-- removing the gluten and using about a cup fewer Concord grapes because that's all we had. I also renamed the final product a "biscuffin" because it really is a mix of a muffin and a biscuit. It's the shape of a muffin, but the texture of a biscuit. You also create the dough/batter in more of a biscuit fashion, cutting the butter into the flour. Easy clean up, too!
The trickiest thing to this recipe is really just deseeding your grapes. Just enter the task with some patience and you'll be fine. I had the best luck taking a sharp paring knife and cutting the grapes in half. I then used the tip of the knife to kind of flick/cut out the seeds. Most of my grapes had at most 3 seeds, but usually only 1 or 2. It's a bit messy, but a delicious kind of messy.
If it's not Concord grape season when you read this, bookmark this page and count down the days until Concord grape season comes again. This is one not to be missed!
Gluten-Free Concord Grape "Biscuffins," (makes 12 regular-sized muffins)
- 1.5 cups (238g) gluten-free flour (I used my blend which contains xanthan gum... be sure your blend does, too)
- 1/3 cup (66g) granulated sugar
- 2 tsps (10g) baking powder
- 1/4 tsp (1g) baking soda
- 1/2 tsp (2g) sea salt
- 6 TBSPs cold unsalted butter, sliced into 12 pieces
- 3/4 cup whole milk
- 1 cup Concord grapes (sliced in half & seeded, keep the skins on)
- demerara sugar (or raw sugar) for sprinkling on top
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and fill a 12-cup cupcake tray with liners. Combine gluten-free flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and sea salt in a medium-sized bowl. Whisk to combine fully. Using a pastry cutter, cut the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture becomes sandy. If you don't have a pastry cutter, you can use your fingers.
Pour milk into the bowl and stir until just mixed-in and there is no dry flour remaining in the bowl. Now, gently fold the deseeded Concord grapes into the batter. Don't overmix. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tin and sprinkle each muffing generously with raw sugar.
Bake 25-30 minutes, rotating the pan half-way through baking. When the "biscuffin" tops are golden and a toothpick tester comes out clean, they are done. Let cool 10 minutes in tray before removing to a cooling rack. "Biscuffins" will last about 3 days, but they won't actually because they're so tasty.