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Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Get in Ma Mouth: Sausage Biscuit Edition

Sausage biscuit at Star Provisions

I've never been to Martin's for biscuits (note to self: rectify this soon), but Clifford Harrison has. And according to Harrison, were it not for Martin's biscuits, the world might not have the joy that is a Star Provisions sausage biscuit.

Harrison is, of course, half of the James Beard award-winning duo behind Star Provisions, and Bacchanalia, and Abattoir, and Floataway Cafe. Saying he knows his stuff is a vast understatement. His ability to take inspiration from a long-lived mini-chain like Martin's and spin it into something (even more) magical is just part of what makes Star Provisions a food destination without peer in Atlanta.

There's plenty of magic behind the counter at the take-out shop within Star Provisions, but today I'm focusing on the sausage biscuit. These are not your ordinary sausage biscuits, starting with the fact that they come with a generous smear of strawberry preserves. And the biscuit itself is not necessarily the draw - it's good, with a nice toasted crunch around the exterior, but not particularly lofty, and not fluffy at all. The draw here rests in the combination of biscuit and savory sausage and sweet fruit that falls into the classic category of the-whole-is-greater-than-the-sum-of-its-parts.

Star Provisions sausage biscuit
In the middle of this construction sits a thick, chunky, pinkish disc of sausage, heavily flecked with green sage and spices. The pork flavor is prominent, complemented by bits of sharp ginger. It would be very good on its own, but the thick strawberry preserves all around it make it great, a back and forth of rich savory and fruity sweet. Then the biscuit brings it all together. Star calls them cathead biscuits, but they're not that big. And the ratio of biscuit to sausage to strawberry seems just right. No surprise - everything is made in house.

If you want one of these magical sausage biscuits, be warned that they only appear on Saturday mornings, and tend to sell out fairly quickly. I like it heated up in their convection oven, which adds a nice crunch to the biscuit. At $4.95, they're not as affordable as their inspiration (Martin's sausage biscuits go for $1.26 each), but they're worth every penny. Also, a note: the housemade preserves are usually of the strawberry variety, but sometimes Star spreads on a surprise alternative. Magic needs its mystery.

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Get in Ma Mouth is a look at delicious things around Atlanta. It all started with a fig and mascarpone doughnut "slider," but knows no bounds other than that of eager hunger - sweet or savory, solid or liquid, homemade or store-bought. Click here for an archive of "Get in Ma Mouth" temptations.

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