Sunday, April 10, 2011

Strawberry Shortcake

Nothing says 'Wonderful Weather' like Fresh Strawberries!  Here in England, we get delightful Strawberries from Spain, so the perfect afternoon treat is Strawberry Shortcake.

PREHEAT oven to 450F.

First, mix washed, hulled, and chopped strawberries with granulated sugar.  For an extra special treat, add a little Grand Marnier!  Stir them well and refrigerate while the oven is heating and you are mixing the dough.

Shortcake Dough:

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 cup margarine or butter, cold and diced
1 egg, slightly beaten
2/3 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
Demerra sugar, for topping (aka sugar in the raw)

1.  Mix together the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder.

2.  Rub diced margarine/butter in with your fingers. (Since living in England, this is the preferred way to 'cut' fat into biscuits... works so much better than using a pastry blender, and it's fun to play with your food!)

3.  Mix wet ingredients together, then stir them into the dry ingredients.  If the dough is too dry, add a little more milk.  If too moist, add a little more flour.  The dough should be stiff, but moist.

4.  Drop onto greased baking sheet.  Bake for 10-12 minutes, until lightly golden brown.

5.  Slice biscuits horizontally.  (For a little added decadence, put a little butter/margarine on each half.) Suggested Serving: Spoon a portion of strawberries onto bottom half, top with a little whipped cream, put the top on and put a few more strawberries on top. 

How you build it is up to you.  Also, with the strawberries and sugar, the recipe that I used suggested 1/4 cup sugar to 6 cups sliced strawberries.  I use this as a guideline, not an actual recipe.  It truly depends on the strawberries, and how much 'sauce' you want.  If you can mix up the strawberries and sugar about an hour beforehand, place the bowl in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes to see how the 'syrup' is coming along... if you would like more syrup, add a little more sugar and stir, place back in the refrigerator.

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