Week 15: Shortcakes

ENGLAND: An authentic shortcake should be like a cross between a biscuit and a pie crust: dense, buttery and with just a hint of sweetness. These are spectacular!

Strawberry Shortcake | Nancy Harmon Jenkins, The New York Times

Ingredientsflour, butter, sugar, salt, baking powder, cream
Rise timeNone!
Special EquipmentNone!

NOTES:

  • Read the recipe all the way through, some of the ingredients listed combine amounts for both the strawberries and the shortcakes. For the shortcakes:
    • 4 cups flour
    • 3 Tbsp sugar
    • 1/4 tsp salt
    • 5 tsp baking powder
    • 3/4 cup softened butter
    • 1-1/4 cups cream (I always use heavy whipping cream, without additives/thickeners)
  • I mixed the ingredients in my stand mixer, with the paddle attachment. First mix the dray ingredients, ON LOW (otherwise, flour will go everywhere!). Then add the softened butter and start on low, increasing to 4 as the butter becomes incorporated. Takes about 3 minutes.
  • Don’t butter the sheet pan. It’ll just burn and smoke where there’s no biscuit
  • Do use softened butter (unlike pie crust), so you can thoroughly mix it in.
  • Biscuit cutters make for higher biscuits, and are worth the investment.
  • The recipe makes “4 generous servings”. There were a lot of comments on how if you make eight 3″ shortcakes (two per person), they are WAY too big. So, I used a 2-12″ cutter to make16 (eight servings). From a comment the recipe author made: “I see the point some made, that the recipe makes far more than 4 servings but back home in Maine at this time of year when our native berries are at their luscious peak, strawberry shortcake is often served on its own as a substantial supper, what we call in Italy a piatto unico, nothing else. In that case, it’s just about right for 4 people, with healthy seconds.”
  • Put the biscuits close together, about a finger-width apart. It helps to keep them straight
  • I brush some melted butter on the tops as well, and then add some granulated sugar.
  • 450 degrees might be a little hot; I set my oven to 450, but then turn it down to 425 when I put the shortcakes in to bake.
  • I use powdered sugar in the berries, it makes for a thicker syrup

Comments/Questions

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s