Oh my goodness, can we ever eat some strawberries around here! I've made sure to have some on hand whenever my granddaughter comes over and there are times when I've had to "cut her off", for fear she might make herself sick.
Yesterday, I asked her, "What shall we make with our strawberries today?" Her reply was an excited, "Strawberry Shortcakes!" So we made strawberry shortcakes.
This is a great recipe for little hands, because she can help with every part- the measuring, pouring, stirring, slicing berries with her special knife, rolling the dough, cutting the cakes, and brushing on the cream. There is so much learning that takes place in a kitchen!
Strawberry shortcake can mean different things to different people. Some like actual yellow cake or pound cake, as a base to hold their berries. I'm going to tell you right now, that is a delicious way to have shortcake. But being southern girls, we also like to make ours with sweetened biscuits. We're going to show you how it's done!
The first thing we did was wash and slice our berries. You'll probably need at least a quart of berries. I've been buying them by the gallon! Once you have your berries sliced, add a few tablespoons sugar to the berries and stir. At room temperature, they will begin to release their juices and be ready for your cakes when it's assembly time.
Preheat your oven to 425 degrees, while you mix up the biscuits. In a large mixing bowl, measure out your flour, sugar, salt and baking powder. Use a whisk to sift out any lumps.
Add butter to the dry ingredients, using a pastry blender, two forks or your fingers to blend, until the butter is the size of small peas.
Add your milk and cream and stir until you have a soft dough. Add more liquid, a teaspoon at a time if needed, to incorporate all the flour.
Knead the dough lightly and then roll out on floured surface to about 1/2 inch thick.
Cut into rounds with a biscuit cutter and place on baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone mat. Brush the tops of biscuits with cream or melted butter. Sprinkle the tops with sugar. I like to use raw sugar, because it produces a nice crunchy top.
While shortcakes are baking, mix up your whipped cream. I add just a little powdered sugar and vanilla to mine, to taste.
Shortcakes are divine, warm from the oven, so we wasted no time putting ours together.
While we were eating, she said, "Grandma, this is the best day ever."
And I said, "Yes, it is."
4 cups all purpose flour
5 T. sugar
1/2 t. salt
5 t. baking powder
3/4 cups butter, cut into small pieces
3 cups heavy cream, divided
1/4 t. vanilla extract
2 T. confectioners sugar
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
In a large mixing bowl, sift together flour, sugar, salt and baking powder.
Add 3/4 cup of butter and rub into dry ingredients, until size of small peas.
Add 1 1/4 cup cups cream (can use part cream and part milk if desired), and mix to a soft dough. Knead the dough gently on a floured surface and roll out to about 1/2 inch thickness. Using a biscuit cutter, cut into rounds.
Melt butter and brush on rounds, or use a little cream. Sprinkle tops with sugar. Bake for 10 - 15 minutes, or until lightly browned.
Whip remaining cream, adding confectioners sugar and vanilla to taste.
Assemble shortcakes by placing split biscuit on each plate. Spoon berries over the bottom of the biscuit, replace top and add whipped cream. Serve immediately.