Tuesday, July 6, 2010
To celebrate the 4th of July I made strawberry and blueberry shortcake, with sparklers!
I searched around for a really good shortcake recipe, a biscuit my friend from Kentucky would be proud of, and found a recipe for "James Beard's Favorite Strawberry Shortcake".
Since I know that the author of my favorite cookbook ever (Sunday Supers at Lucques by Suzane Goin) won a James Beard Foundation award for best chef I figured ole James probably knew what he was talking about.
And boy did he! The shortcakes were amazing and my friend from Kentucky was proud.
I was very skeptical because the recipe calls for 4 hard boiled egg yolks and that was just about the weirdest thing I'd ever heard. I don't understand what they are for, but whatever it is it worked because they were delicious!
I served the shortcakes with strawberries and blueberries and lots of whipped cream.
4 cups flour
1/4 cup, plus 2 tablespoons sugar
3 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 3/4 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons salt
3/4 cup butter, chilled and cut into bits
1 1/2 cups whipping cream
4 hard-cooked egg yolks, mashed
4 tablespoons melted butter
Combine the flour with the sugar, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt in a food processor and pulse a few times. Add the chilled butter and pulse a few more times until small balls form. Dump the dough into a bowl and stir in the cream and egg yolks quickly until a lumpy, loose dough forms.
Knead the dough on a floured surface just a few times (don't over work the dough) and pat it out to 3/4" thickness. Cut out 8 (or so) 3" rounds and an equal number of 2 1/2-inch rounds.
Place larger rounds on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, brush with some of the melted butter and then place smaller rounds on top of the larger rounds. (I thought this part was as weird as the egg yolks, but it makes it easy the shortcakes tall and fluffy and super easy to split.)
Bake in a 375-degree oven for 15 to 18 minutes, until golden brown.
Place the shortcakes on a platter, lift off the tops and cover them with the whipped cream and fruit, put the tops back on and serve!