Arsip Tag: shortcakes

strawberry shortcakes – smitten kitchen

Let me guess: It’s Sunday. If you’re lucky, you’ve got at least a whole extra day left of a summer-summoning holiday weekend and if you’re even luckier, and the weather is a little more barbecue, pot-luck or picnic-friendly than it is where I am in the mountains of North Carolina, and maybe, just maybe, you’re trying to figure out what you can bring that won’t take you any time to make.

egg yolk shortcake doughshortcake dough

Well, Smitten Kitchen is here for you! A few weeks ago, the Los Angeles Times’ ran an article on shortcakes, no not those little “foam discs” that you find next to the strawberries at the grocery store, but lightly sweetened cream biscuits — rich and buttery, coming to a crunch at the edges (often hastened by a sprinkling of coarse sugar), just the perfect cake to offset some lightly sweetened whipped cream and slightly macerated berries. Drooling yet? I was and the accompanying recipe was quickly moved to the top of the Cook This Now or Lose It Forever list. (Top Gun, anyone?)

shortcakebrushing shortcakes with creamsprinkled with sugarshortcakes, cooling

A week later, that poor thing got pushed aside for the most perfect cream biscuit-topped Rhubarb Cobbler I will ever want to eat. Those biscuits were a work of art, and I swore I’d try them soon on their own and see how they held up. And guess what? With only a nudge less cream and flour, they’re also a near-exact match for what Russ Parsons declared his new ultimate shortcake.

strawberriesstrawberries with lemon and sugar

And oh, they are. Believe me, I know. I’ve now made them four times because, I’m warning you, when you find your shortcake nirvana, the reasons pile up that you should make them again: It’s a sunny Wednesday night and you want to grill on your friend’s roof. It’s a Friday night and friends are demanding an encore. It’s a lazy Sunday and it occurs to you that there are some people out there on the internet that might also like to share in your shortcake breakthrough. As you wish!

strawberry shortcake

Strawberry Shortcakes
Adapted from Claudia Fleming and Russ Parsons

Psst: In June 2017, I created a new, simpler shortcake recipe. Check it out here.

Serves 6

1 2/3 cups (224 grams) all-purpose flour
3 1/2 tablespoons (50 grams) sugar
1 tablespoon plus 1/2 teaspoon (20 grams) baking powder
2 hard-boiled egg yolks
1/8 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons (84 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 teaspoons lemon or orange zest (optional)
2/3 cup (168 grams) plus 1 tablespoon heavy cream

Shortcake assembly
1/2 pound strawberries, washed, hulled and quartered
2 tablespoons (25 grams) sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 cup whipping cream, beaten to soft peaks

In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, egg yolks, and salt. Pulse to combine. Add the butter and zest, if using, and pulse until the flour resembles coarse meal. Add 2/3 cup of cream and pulse until the dough comes together.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and gather into a shaggy mass. Knead a couple times to make it into a cohesive mass and then pat it into a rough circle about 6 to 7 inches in diameter, and 3/4 to 1-inch thick.

Using a sharp knife, cut the circle into 6 wedges and arrange on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Alternately, you can use a cookie cutter to make shapes of your choice. Chill for 20 minutes (and up to 2 hours).

Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush the tops of the shortcakes very lightly with heavy cream and sprinkle lightly with the coarse sugar. Bake until risen and golden brown, 18 to 20 minutes. Turn the pan around halfway through to ensure even cooking.

While the shortcakes are baking, toss the strawberries, sugar and lemon juice together in a bowl. Let stand several minutes. (If the strawberries are extremely firm, do this 30 minutes in advance.)

Split the shortcakes in half horizontally and set the tops aside. Place the bottoms on dessert plates and heap strawberries over them. Spoon whipped cream generously over the strawberries and replace the shortcake tops. Serve immediately with any remaining whipped cream on the side.

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easy drop berry shortcakes – smitten kitchen

The trickiest thing I’ve found about them? Not eating them plain, the moment they’re cool enough to handle. They make such a great breakfast scone/sweet biscuit, I’m sure you’ll see what I mean. They’ve got me dreaming of “breakfast shortcakes” — should you not be ready for a full cup of whipped cream with you coffee — with dollops of sweetened yogurt and all the berries you can get your hands on.

Quite often, when a recipe calls for 2 egg yolks, it can be replaced with 1 whole egg. However, I never tried it here. I wanted the richness and color. But, I suspect it will not ruin anything if you want to find out how it goes.

Note: The photos above show a half-recipe.

    Shortcakes
  • 2 1/4 cups (295 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 tablespoons (40 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea or table salt
  • 6 tablespoons (85 grams or 3 ounces) unsalted butter, cold, cut into chunks
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons (205 ml) heavy cream
  • 3 tablespoons (35 grams) raw or turbinado sugar
  • To finish
  • 1 pound (455 grams) strawberries or mixed berries, hulled and halved if large
  • 2 tablespoons (25 grams) granulated sugar, or more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) fresh lemon juice (optional)
  • 1 cup (235 ml) heavy or whipping cream

Make shortcakes: Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, granulated sugar, and salt until thoroughly combined. Add butter and using your fingertips or a pastry blender, break it into small bits, the largest should be no bigger than a small pea. In a small bowl, whisk yolks with a splash of cream, then pour rest of cream in and whisk to combine. Pour into butter-flour mixture and use a rubber spatula to mix and mash it together into one cohesive dough.

Divide dough into 6 (for large, 3 1/2 to 3 3/4-inch wide and up to 2-inch tall) shortcakes or 8 smaller ones. I do this by pressing the dough somewhat flat into the bottom of the bowl (to form a circle) and using a knife to divide it into pie-like wedges. Place raw or turbinado sugar in a small bowl. Roll each wedge of shortcake into a ball in your hands and roll it through the raw/turbinado sugar, coating it in all but a small area that you should leave bare. (I found that the sugar underneath the shortcakes would burn, so better to leave it off.)

Place it, bare spot down, on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining wedges of dough. Bake for 15 minutes, until lightly golden all over. Let cool completely on tray or on a cooling rack.

While cooling, prepare fruit and cream: Mix berries, 2 tablespoons sugar (more or less to taste), and lemon juice, if desired, in a bowl and let macerate so that the juices run out.

In a larger bowl, beat cream until soft peaks form. Add sugar to taste, or leave unsweetened, if that’s your preference.

To serve: Carefully split each cooled shortcake with a serrated knife. Spoon berries and their juices over bottom half. Heap generously with whipped cream. Place shortcake “lid” on top. Eat immediately and don’t forget to share.

Do ahead: Shortcakes keep well for a day at room temperature. I prefer to keep them uncovered. I found on the second day, they were a little more firm but not half-bad, but they’re definitely “best” on day one.

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