Strawberries also pair particularly well with the spirit of spring and summer entertaining, which is all about freshness, simplicity, and a light touch. All you really need is a little time, a few ingredients, and a few friends to share them with; the season’s bounty will do most of the work for you. And where fresh berries and breezy backyard fare meet, you’ll find the very best of both - strawberry shortcake. It’s a seamless fusion of classic and casual, simple yet sophisticated, refreshing and comforting. Elegant enough for a bridal shower buffet, easy enough for a quick weeknight supper; put simply, it is berries, sugar and cream in their most delectable form.
These traditional, biscuit-style shortcakes are light, not too sweet, and ideal for a crowd. Homemade whipped cream is best, but canned works too if you’re in a hurry. For the best presentation, brush the biscuit tops with cream and sprinkle with sugar just before they go in the oven. And of course, strawberries are just the beginning – go with whatever is plentiful, fresh, and in season. Blackberries, raspberries, boysenberries – even sliced peaches, plums or nectarines make delicious shortcakes.
3 cups hulled & sliced fresh strawberries
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 cup heavy cream
1-2 tablespoons powdered sugar (to taste)
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup butter
2/3 cup heavy cream
1 egg, beaten
Sprinkle 3 tablespoons sugar over strawberries, mix gently, and refrigerate 1 hour or until ready to use.
For whipped cream:
Beat 1 cup heavy cream until it almost holds soft peaks. Fold in powdered sugar and continue beating until soft peaks form. Refrigerate until ready to use. Can be made ahead but may lose some volume; if so, beat again just before serving.
In a large bowl, blend flour, sugar, and baking powder. Cut in butter with pastry blender or pulse in food processor until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in cream and egg until just moistened. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead 8-10 times. Press into a rectangle about a half-inch thick. Cut into 12 squares and place 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes or until golden.
Let shortcakes cool completely. Split each shortcake and layer with whipped cream and strawberries. Top with a dollop of whipped cream, more strawberries, or mint leaves.