Thursday, June 24, 2010

Strawberry Shortcake and another Stir Fry

Dinner was okay last night. I adapted the recipe to use up items in the fridge and it turned out to just be okay. BUT dessert with our strawberries from the farm was loved by everyone.

My friend made this Strawberry Shortcake after we had gone picking a couple of weeks ago. Her husband said it was the best he’d ever had. I wasn’t so sure it was going to work out as I was preparing the shortcakes. I was remembering I am NOT a baker! They turned out okay, but not fluffy and they did not rise enough to allow me to split them like in the directions. My husband said he agreed they were the best, but asked if maybe my friend could make them and we would compare. The kids just thought the whole thing was fabulous!

Wednesday Menu: Stir-Fry with Turnips, Sugar Snap Peas and Chicken, Strawberry Shortcake
Farm Share Produce: Sugar Snap Peas, Turnips, Strawberries

Here is the link – I would try it again and definitely use scallops or shrimp. I think their sweetness would be balance the dish and be good. I used leftover grilled chicken and it dulled dish. I did add turnips and I think that would work with the original recipe. They need more cooking time, about 10 minutes total. Add the snap peas after 7 minutes.

Strawberry Shortcake
I’m writing it just like it’s in the cookbook, and the baker’s out there will have the best Strawberry Shortcake EVER!
From Baking Illustrated from the editor’s of Cook’s Illustrated Magazine

8 cups strawberries (about 2 ½ pounds), hulled
6 T sugar

2 cups (10 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
5 T sugar
1 T baking powder
½ t salt
8 T (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into ½ inch cubes
1 large egg, lightly beaten
½ cup plus 1 T half and half or whole milk
1 large egg white, lightly beaten

2 cup Whipped Cream

For the Fruit: Place 3 cups of the hulled strawberries in a large bowl and crush. Slice the remaining 5 cups berries and stir into the crushed berries along with the sugar. Set the fruit aside to macerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours.
For the Shortcakes: Adjust the oven rack to the lower-middle position and heat the over to 425 degrees. In a food processor, pulse the flour, 3 T of sugar, the baking powder, and salt to combine. Scatter the butter pieces over and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal, about 15 one second pulses. Transfer to a medium bowl.
Mix the beaten egg with the half and half in a measuring cup. Pour the egg mixture into the bowl with the flour mixture. Combine with a rubber spatula until large clumps form. Turn the mixture onto a floured work surface and lightly knead until it comes together.
Use your fingertips to pat the dough into a 9x6 rectangle about ¾ inch thick, being careful not to overwork the dough. Flour a 2 ¾ inch biscuit cutter and cut out 6 rounds (You can use the scraps to cut out 1 or 2 more rounds). Place the rounds 1 inch apart on a small baking sheet, brush the tops with the beaten egg white, and sprinkle with the remaining 2 T sugar. (Dough rounds can be covered and refrigerated for up to 2 hours before baking.)
Bake until the shortcakes are golden brown, 12 – 14 minutes. Place the baking sheet on a wire rack and cool the cakes until warm, about 10 minutes.
Assembly: When the shortcakes have cooled slightly, split them in half. Place each cake bottom on a serving plate. Spoon a portion of the fruit and then a dollop of the whipped cream over each cake bottom. Cap with the cake top and serve.

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