Some of the simplest desserts are my favorite, and most popular with you guys, too. Simple Strawberry Shortcake combines the richness of a super easy biscuit, the tart sweetness of summer strawberries and the cool decadence of real whipped cream into one fine dessert.
Best part? You can be a total kitchen ‘newbie’ and still pull this one off. Trust me.
Summer is here, and in full swing. I’m enjoying it so much I completely forgot to send my son to ‘summer preschool’ yesterday. Yep. Completely skipped it on accident, and did something else, (ie: went to Adventureland). I swear I’ve been in a fog since World Pork Expo, yikes.
We are gearing up to farrow more ladies in the coming month. I can’t wait for some more spotted babies soon. Thankfully inside the farrowing house, we can keep the sows and babies comfortable in these relentless temperatures we’ve been having in Iowa already this summer. Pigs can’t sweat, of course you know that… but did you know that the act of evaporation can help cool them down quickly?
We’re finding things to fill the time, but as a Mom, I don’t know how time can pass as quickly as it does. Here’s to slowing down a bit and savoring every last bit of summer.
And enjoying dessert FIRST.
Strawberry Shortcake Dessert
Makes 6-8 servings
By: Cristen foodandswine.com
For the Shortcakes:
2 cups all purpose flour
1 TBSP baking powder
3/4 tsp salt
2 TBSP granulated sugar
5 TBSP cold butter, cubed
3/4 cup heavy cream, well chilled
2 TBSP milk or water, well chilled
Garnish of Shortcakes:
2 TBSP melted butter
1 1/2 TBSP granulated sugar
For the Strawberries:
7 cups of strawberries, rinsed, hulled and halved
1/2 cup of sugar (you can use more or less depending on the sweetness of the strawberries)
In a medium sized bowl, combine strawberries and sugar. Stir well. Let stand for at least 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes.
For the Whipped Cream:
2 cups heavy cream, well chilled
2 tsp sour cream
1/3 cup powdered sugar
3/4 tsp vanilla extract
small pinch of salt
Beat all ingredients together until soft peaks form.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
In a medium mixing bowl, add flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Whisk well.
“Cut in butter” or “press cubes down with fork/pastry cutter”, until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Stir in cream and milk. Mix only until combined. Dough will barely come together, this is a good thing.
On a floured surface, pat dough into a disk, gently. Chill if butter seems melted. (Chill in ref. for 10 minutes)
Cut into 6-8 squares or rounds of dough. Place on greased or lined baking sheet.
Brush dough pieces with melted butter, sprinkle with sugar.
Bake at 450 degrees F for 15 minutes or until shortcakes are golden brown on edges and puffed throughout.
Remove from oven, place on cooling rack to cool until warm.
*Assemble strawberries and whipped cream as stated above.
Split one shortcake, add a generous amount of strawberries. *nearly 1 cup if you are making only 6 desserts
Add whipped cream, at least 1/3 of a cup sized dollop. Top with remaining shortcake half.
Sour cream helps stabilize the whipped cream, or keep it from losing shape and seeping, in this dessert. It is an optional ingredient, so if you don’t have it, no worries.
Give me #AllTheFlakyLayers:
If you want additional flaky layers in your shortcakes, pat or roll dough out to the size of a standard sheet of paper, fold like a letter, then fold the letter in half so you have a rough square. Chill for 15 minutes then roll out and proceed. *This mimics the ‘laminating’ process that people use to make ultra flaky biscuits or croissants. Works every time!
Rough and tumble approach:
If you don’t want to cut biscuits out, gather dough into 6-8 like sized portions, press together gently. This will give you attractively craggled shortcakes, but I don’t recommend cutting these in half as they may spread a bit. Just spoon strawberries and whipped cream over the top!
Want a bit more flavor?
Immediately prior to serving, stir in some fresh basil leaves that you’ve sliced into thin ribbons.
Or a bit of acid?
Reduce balsamic vinegar by half to 2/3 in a small saucepan until it is thick. After splitting the shortcake, and adding the strawberries, drizzle the balsamic vinegar reduction over the berries for a special treat. Finish the dessert with whipped cream, it still works!