It’s strawberry season in Tennessee, and to commemorate the once a year red-all-the-way-through-the-berry-strawberries, I thought I’d bake and post a recipe for shortcake.
I’ve been crazy busy lately; you know, child-rearing, working, and making dinner for 2 hungry fellas! However, I managed to sneak away today with our sweet nanny to the Green Door Gourmet farm for some organic strawberries. She was super excited when I told her the Green Door Gourmet’s barn was where Rayna married Deacon. So our trip was doubly fitting because it marks the end of (sniff, sniff) the Nashville tv show! (The show ended but we still have so many unanswered questions; did Juliette really die in a plane crash over Memphis??? Will Deacon stay sober??? Will Will save country music from the right wing??? )
The Green Door offers a tractor ride to the strawberry patch where you can do your own picking. We decided P was a little too young for strawberry picking (maybe next year!?) so we purchased our berries in the farm store then
trespassed stopped in Rayna’s wedding barn for some photo ops.
This recipe is pretty simple and all Alton’s. To be honest, this shortcake reminded me more of a biscuit – crusty and crumbly and perfect for sopping up all that sweet strawberry juice! Let’s get it going… first you are going to clean and slice your berries, removing the green tops and any white piths. Make sure they are sliced into bite-sized pieces. Next mix the cane sugar with the berries and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. The sugars will break down the berries slightly and create a juice may as well be liquid gold. If you have local super sweet strawberries that look like mine, you won’t need as much sugar. I decreased my sugar by 1 tablespoon, but if your berries are bitter I would follow the 3 tablespoon recipe.
Next step; preheat the oven to 450 degrees, line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and gather up your shortcake ingredients.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt and sugar. Cut in the butter and shortening, either using two knives or a pastry cutter.
Mix in the half & half (buttermilk would work here too) and stir with a wooden spoon until the dough comes together.
Using two spoons or a scooper, place good-sized rounds of dough onto the parchment lined baking sheets.
Build your strawberry shortcake, slicing the shortcake in half through the equator, then adding strawberries, the sweet syrup you created with the sugar, whipped cream, and finally, the crusty top of the shortcake.
Strawberry Shortcake (Recipe by Alton Brown)
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Makes: 12-16 shortcakes
- 1 cup sliced berries
- 2-3 tablespoons cane sugar
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 4 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon turbinado sugar
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons shortening
- 3/4 cup half & half
- 2 tablespoons melted butter to brush over top of the shortcake
- whipped cream (like cool whip or redi-whip)
- Preheat oven to 450 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Mix sliced strawberries with 2-3 tablespoons cane sugar. Place in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Cut in the butter and shortening, either using two knives or a pastry cutter, until the butter chunks are pea-sized.
- Mix in the half & half (buttermilk would also work) and stir with a wooden spoon until the dough comes together.
- Using two spoons or a scooper, drop good-sized rounds of dough onto the parchment lined baking sheets.
- Brush the shortcakes with melted butter and then sprinkle with coarse sugar, like turbinado.
- Bake at 450 for 15 minutes, or until browned on top.
- Slice shortcake in half, spoon in strawberries with juices, and whipped cream onto bottom half of shortcake, then top with remaining half of shortcake.