Strawberry Shortcakes

Today I baked strawberry shortcakes.  Why?  Because I felt like it.  I’m in a very ‘country/old fashioned/nostalgic/country women’s association’ kinda mood and the only way to get this out of my system, in my opinion, is to bake strawberry shortcakes.  They’re cute, old school and pretty...three good enough reasons to get my bake on. 

Strawberry shortcakes are deliciously crumbly biscuits laced with buttery succulence and are the perfect way to celebrate the best of spring’s strawberries.  You may fool yourself into thinking that they are scones, they are not.  No, they are much less doughy, with more of a biscuit texture and a lot sweeter in flavour.  In my opinion, scones don’t even come close to the deliciousness offered up by strawberry shortcakes.  And to gild the lily these American style biscuits are sandwiched together with whipped cream and served with sweet, juicy, heart shaped strawberries, making the perfect accompaniment to your afternoon cup of tea.     

I followed this Martha Stewart recipe to a tee however, for you, my lovely readers I would suggest using a ¼ measuring cup when scooping the mixture onto the baking tray instead of the ½ cup.  The ½ cup measure is way too generous of a portion size and is in fact a little intimidating when you're staring at the final product.  And if I am willing to admit the ½ cup measure makes them ludicrously big, they are.  Other than that, go for it!  The strawberry shortcakes are wonderful and I promise they too will seduce you into a nostalgic/country/homely kind of mood.  Enjoy.  K X

Strawberry Shortcake
Martha Stewart recipe
2 punnets strawberries, rinsed, hulled, and quartered
1 1/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons caster sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
12 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2 cups heavy cream
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 180° degrees.  In a medium bowl, toss strawberries with 3/4 cup sugar and allow to sit to bring out their juices.
In a food processor, pulse flour, baking powder, 1/2 cup sugar, and the salt until combined. Add butter, and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal. In a medium bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup cream and the eggs; pour over flour mixture, and pulse until some large clumps begin to form, 25 to 30 times.
Using a quarter-cup measuring cup, gently pack dough, invert, and then tap out onto a baking sheet. Repeat to form 8 biscuits. Bake until lightly golden, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool, about 15 minutes.
Beat remaining 1 1/2 cups cream and 2 tablespoons sugar with the vanilla until soft peaks form.
Slice biscuits in half horizontally. Spoon strawberries and their liquid over bottom halves. Spoon whipped cream on strawberries, and replace top halves of biscuits.

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