For many, summer deserts mean ice cream, popsicles, and all manner of frozen treats...
... for me, the perfect summer desert means shortcake. In my family that usually meant strawberry, but today I thought I'd use what was the most in season: raspberries, blueberries, and a little bit of homemade wild blackberry jam.
But those are just the toppings. No shortcake is complete without the proper foundation, the shortcake itself, or in this case, my Mama's biscuit recipe. An old classic from the original New York Times Cookbook, she adds a few tablespoons of powdered sugar and a little magic to hers.
Mixing the ice cold butter into the flour mixture by hand, and bringing air into it by crumbling the butter several inches above the bowl brings a new level of flaky goodness to this otherwise fairly simple recipe. But as with anything this simple, it's all in how it comes together.
And this classic comes together beautifully. My Mama always uses fresh whipping cream to make the whipped cream, adding just a touch of powdered sugar for a hint of sweetness. For this recipe I thought I'd give coconut cream a try as whipping cream and I don't always get along so well. I'm happy to report it worked out beautifully! Swirling in a bit of homemade wild blackberry jam didn't hurt either.
Diving into this lightly sweet and perfectly fresh summer treat instantly brings me back warm summer nights, standing on my tip toes as my Mom assembled this little slice of magic, and then devouring every last crumb. I have no doubt you and your little ones, will do the same.
- 2 cups sifted flour
- 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoons very cold butter
- 2/3 cup milk (adjust for dryness)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Sift the flour baking powder, powdered sugar, and salt into a mixing bowl. Next, break the butter up into small pieces and sprinkle into the flour mixture. Begin working the butter into the flour mixture with your fingers, crumbling the two together several inches above the mixing bowl to bring more air into the dough. Once you have course grain texture, gently stir in the milk until just combined. Do not overwork the dough. I like to chill the dough for 20 minutes, but it's fine to press out at this time. Press the dough out into a round about 3/4 inch thick and using any shape cookie cutter you like (i used a jam jar lid) begin cutting out the biscuits. You might have to recombine the dough a few times to get as many biscuits out of the recipe as you can. Arrange the biscuits on a lined baking sheet and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until lightly golden on top.
Coconut Whipped Cream Recipe:
- 1 14 oz can coconut cream or whole coconut milk, cold, OR 8 oz whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1-2 tablespoons powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon - 1/4 cup blackberry or raspberry jam (mix in on a per shortcake basis, or the entire mixture as desired)
Empty the coconut cream into the mixer with a whisk attachment (can also be done by hand). Whip on a slow speed at first to make sure the coconut cream is well mixed together, then turn the speed up to high for 5 minutes. Add in the vanilla and mix. Add the powdered sugar and mix. Mix in the jam as desired.
Break the biscuits in half and add a dollop of the coconut cream or whipped cream with jam on the bottom half of the biscuit. Add as many blueberries, raspberries, or any other kind of berries you would like. Layer on another dollop of cream and place the other half of the biscuit on top. Add a little more cream and a few more berries on top to finish it off.
* Last time in Recipes: 11 Campfire Recipes