Until recently, my shortcakes were made using that famous brand of store-bought biscuit mix. Those days are over, I'm happy to say! I found a shortcake recipe from Alton Brown that is easy, delicious and economical. I tried this recipe for shortcakes this past weekend when we had company over for steaks on the grill. I increased the amount of sugar from the original recipe based on reviews I had read.
I much prefer these sweetened baking powder biscuit-style shortcakes to sponge cakes. Evidently, my guests did also since the shortcakes were being eaten off the platter even without berries and whipped cream!
When I prepare the strawberries, I usually add a small splash of Cointreau or Grand Marnier along with about 1/4 cup of sugar. I allow the berries to sit on the kitchen counter for about 1 hour, stirring occasionally until the berries become juicy and perfect for the shortcakes. You could also add a little Cointreau or Grand Marnier to the heavy cream while you are whipping it but I normally use just vanilla and a little powdered sugar.
Enjoy this classic dessert while strawberries are at their best!
Recipe adapted from Alton Brown
2 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons shortening
3/4 cup half and half (I use fat-free)
Melted butter to brush shortcakes
2 pounds fresh strawberries or other berries sliced and mixed with 1/4-1/2 cup granulated sugar and a splash of orange-flavored liqueur to taste and allowed to sit for one hour, stirring occasionally
Heavy cream beaten with a little powdered sugar and vanilla until loosely whipped and not overly beaten until stiff and dry
Heat oven 400F
In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Cut in butter and shortening. Mix in half-and-half. Drop by large spoonfuls onto a baking sheet. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 15 minutes or until brown. Cool and eat with berries and sweetened whipped cream.
I'll be joining Foodie Friday at Designs by Gollum and Seasonal Sundays at The Tablescaper.