Hope y’all had a happy Fourth of July! We sure did! Between the three of us, I think we ate a total of five hamburgers, participated in one parade, purchased two t-shirts, sang one national anthem, and swam in four pools … which is about as patriotic as we could get, in light of the burn ban in central Texas right now.
As far as dessert, John and I debated between Strawberry Shortcakes and Peach Cobbler. In the end, we opted for shortcakes because they only require 12-15 minutes to cook … and we were already running late (no surprise there). The recipe is below. What did you make on the Fourth of July? I am curious to hear what types of dishes are meaningful and memorable in your family.
Simply Superb Strawberry Shortcakes
My mom often made strawberry shortcake for us when we were kids. It was my favorite dessert, especially in the summer. Instead of cooking the strawberries, I marinate them in sugar. This process softens the berries and brings out the juices, leaving you with the vibrant red filling and a sweet sauce to pour over the rich buttery cakes. Add a spoonful of sweetened whipped cream for an extra indulgence.
1¾ cups all-purpose flour
¼ cup plus 6 tablespoons sugar, divided
3 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup cold unsalted butter, cut into eight slices
1 large egg
1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
4 cups fresh strawberries
1 pint heavy whipping cream
2 to 3 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 425°. Place the flour, ¼ cup sugar, baking powder and salt in a food processor; pulse to combine. Add the slices of cold butter.
Pulse until the mixture looks like cornmeal (do not overmix). If you look closely at the mixture, you can see little clumps of cold butter; this is exactly what you want. In a small bowl, whisk egg and 1/3 cup cream. Pour into the food processor.
Pulse until dough holds together (dough will be soft and slightly sticky). Using a spoon and your hands as needed, form small biscuits and place them on a foil-lined baking sheet. For the batch pictured below, I made 15 mini-shortcakes (about 1 inch in diameter and and ¾ inch thick). For 8 standard-sized shortcakes, make the biscuits about 3 inches in diameter and ¾ inch thick.
While biscuits are baking, wash, hull and slice the strawberries into a large bowl. Add the remaining 4 tablespoons sugar and toss to coat. Cover with plastic wrap. Marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes.
For topping, in a small mixing bowl, whip the pint of cream. When cream is almost whipped, add sugar and vanilla; continue whipping until firm. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Remove biscuits from oven. Cool for 10 minutes.