Elizabeth Beard’s Strawberry Shortcake

Elizabeth Beard’s Strawberry Shortcake

strawberry shortcake

This may be a kind of blasphemy, but my family prefers to eat this kind of show. It’s easier to eat-you avoid pressing fruit and cream on the sides and plates of the shortbread. When you scoop the berries and cream in half, the ratio of fruit to cream is also better, but it does suffer. If you have a company, you can stack them up and let them unravel by themselves.

Note: The printed version of this story contains an incorrect ingredient at the bottom of the ingredient list. Please ignore the extra 1½ teaspoon of coarse salt, we apologize!

6 servings

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon plus ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • ¼ teaspoon coarse salt, divided
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into cubes and refrigerated
  • 2 hard-boiled egg yolks, mashed with a fork or passed through a small mesh sieve
  • 1¾ cup frozen heavy cream, divided
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted

3 pints of fresh strawberries, washed, shelled, and cut in half or quarters, depending on the size

Preheat the oven to 400˚F.

In a large bowl, sift the flour and baking powder together. Add ¼ cup sugar and salt.

Add the frozen butter cubes and use your fingertips to add the butter to the flour mixture until it has the consistency of coarse breadcrumbs. Add the mashed boiled egg yolks.

Add ¾ cup of cream little by little. Mix gently until the dough just comes together.

Place the dough on a lightly floured board and gently knead it into a smooth ball (about two or three turns). Gently tap the dough to make a 1 inch thick flat plate. Using a lightly floured 2.5-inch round biscuit cutter or an overturned glass, cut directly to make 6 shortbread cookies. Place the shortbread on a plate lined with wax paper or plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour or overnight.

Before baking, brush the top of each shortbread with melted butter and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of sugar.

Transfer the frozen shortbread to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake on the center rack of the oven for 15-20 minutes, until golden to the touch and firm. Remove from the oven and let cool.

When the shortbread is cool, prepare the fruit filling and whipped cream. Put the strawberries in a large bowl. Stir gently with 2 tablespoons of sugar and let stand until softened, up to 10 minutes.

In the bowl of a stand mixer equipped with a whisk attachment, whip the remaining frozen heavy cream at low speed and gradually increase the speed until it starts to thicken. Reduce the speed, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar, and slowly increase the speed until the whipped cream thickens, a total of about 4 minutes.

Or, shake the cream and sugar vigorously in a large mason jar until the desired consistency is reached, 10-15 minutes, depending on the strength and determination of the upper body.

Using a fork or serrated knife, cut the shortbread in half. Place the lower part on a plate, and use a spoon to fill up the strawberry and juice. Put a large piece of whipped cream on top. Put the other half of each shortbread on top, or put the upper half aside and serve with the noodles open. Serve immediately, if not earlier.

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