Archive for June 1, 2006

Old Fashioned Strawberry Shortcake

I love cookbooks. To say I collect cookbooks would be inadequate ~ I covet and adore them. I prefer old books with a bit of history, preferably with stories to go along with the recipes. One of my favorites, handed down to me by my grandmother, is Della Lutes’ The Country Kitchen (just found out this book has been reprinted by Wayne State University Press). This book is really the story of life on a Michigan farm in the late 1800’s, with a few recipes thrown in. I have wanted to try one for a long time: Old Fashioned Strawberry Shortcake.

Perfect for Jihva For Strawberries, held this month over at Baking Fairy’s site.

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Strawberry Shortcake Ingredients

Ingredients for Old Fashioned Strawberry Shortcake: fresh strawberries, flour, baking soda and salt sifted together, real butter and thick sour cream.

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Old Fashioned Strawberry Shortcake

2c all purpose flour, preferably unbleached

sifted with

1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda

4 TB real butter
1c rich, thick sour cream (I didn’t have a whole cup, so made up the difference with yogurt)

1-2 quarts fresh, ripe strawberries
sugar/Splenda as needed to sprinkle over berries

More butter for the hot shortbread
Powdered sugar for sprinkling

Fresh sweet cream for serving, if desired

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Wash and top fresh strawberries. Slice thinly into shallow bowl, and sprinkle with sugar/splenda (I used mostly splenda because my daughter is insulin-dependent diabetic). Allow to rest for 30 min or until sugar draws out juices from strawberries.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Have softened butter in a large bowl. Make a rich dough by sifting flour, salt and soda together into butter bowl. Use a fork or pastry blender to combine with butter. The mixture should look like large flakes with some extra flour on sides/bottom of bowl. Add sour cream/yogurt and mix again, gently. When dough begins to moisten and form a rough ball, remove to floured board/counter and knead gently ~ just enough to incorporate any loose mixture. Pat out into round to fit a greased (I used PAM spray) round cake pan ~ this need not fill the pan to the sides.

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Ready For The Oven

Shortcake Ready For Baking

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Bake in preheated oven 15-20 minutes, until golden on top and hollow-sounding when tapped. Remove from oven and let cool in pan 5-10 minutes.

When cool enough to handle, slice shortcake into top/bottom halves. Butter each half “fulsomely” as Della Lutes describes. Place bottom half on a large plate, and spoon sliced strawberries over. Cover with top half and sift powdered sugar over all.

Serve at once with fresh sweet cream on the side, if desired.

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