Monday, June 27, 2011

Strawberry shortcakes

        buttermilk biscuits
+      strawberries
+      whipped cream
+      mint                        
awesome summer dessert

Makes 8-9 cakes

For the biscuits:
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 cup butter, cold, cut into pea-sized pieces
1 1/2 to 2 cups buttermilk, plus additional for brushing

For the confit:

1 quart fresh strawberries
1/3 cup sugar
1-2 tablespoons water
Peel of 1/2 apple

For the whipped cream:

1 pint heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons confectioner's sugar

Small bunch of mint

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Sift together the flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Cut in the shortening using a pastry blender or your hands until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Make a well in the center and add 1 cup buttermilk. Using your hands, quickly fold the dry ingredients into the buttermilk until a sticky dough forms. You may need to add more buttermilk.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Gently fold the dough over itself 3 or 4 times to create layers. Press the dough out to 1 1/2-inches thick and cut with a floured 3-inch biscuit cutter. Lay the biscuits on an ungreased cookie sheet and brush the tops with buttermilk. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until risen and golden brown.

While the biscuits are cooking, de-stem the strawberries and cut them into quarters. Set aside a few strawberries to use as a garnish for later. Toss the rest of the strawberries in the sugar, water, and apple peel, then place in small pot and cook on simmer for 20-30 minutes.

To make the whipped cream, use an electric mixer to whip the cream, sugar, and vanilla together until desired consistency is reached, 3-4 minutes.

Cut the biscuits in half width-wise, then position one half on a plate. Place a healthy serving of strawberry confit on top, then a dollop of whipped cream, then some fresh strawberries, if desired. Position the other biscuit half on an angle, add a sprig of mint, and serve!

Biscuits adapted from Tyler Florence. Errything else by me!

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