Monday, June 21, 2010

Monday Meals with Mincie: Strawberry Shortcake

Today is the official first day of summer and, for me, no summer is ever complete without enjoying several strawberry shortcakes.  Mincie often made her own Southern style shortcakes, which were my favorite. Occasionally she'd resort to purchasing mini Hostess sponge cakes that had wells in them to hold the sweetened berries.  They were good, but not as good as her homemade sweetened biscuits.  Like so many things she made, I don't think she had a recipe for these, but the following is my closest approximation.

Mincie's Strawberry Shortcake

1 quart of fresh strawberries (approximately)
1/3 cup of sugar

1) Wash and hull strawberries.
2)  Slice into a bowl.
3)  Sprinkle sugar over berries.
4)  Set aside for about an hour, at room temperature.
5)  When ready, sugar should be dissolved and berries should be juicy.

Sweetened Biscuits:

2 cups flour
1 Tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup milk

1) Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
2) Mix dry ingredients.
3) Cut butter into about eight pieces and add to dry ingredients.  Mix butter into dry ingredients, using either a pastry blender or the back of a fork.  Butter should be about the size of small peas when blended.
4) Make a well in the center, add milk, and mix until thorougly moistened.
5) Let dough sit for a few minutes, then sprinkle flour on clean countertop, pat dough out into a rectangle, knead two to three times, then roll out using a drinking glass.  Cut into biscuits using the opening of the drinking glass and place in buttered biscuit pans.*
6) Bake 10 - 12 minutes until brown on top.

To prepare:
Slice biscuits in half, horizontally, while still warm and place a pat of butter on the bottom.  Place top back on so both halves will end up buttered.  Allow to cool slightly, then remove top of biscuit, cover bottom of biscuit with sweetened strawberries along with some juice, and place top of biscuit on top of strawberries.  Top with more strawberries, then add Cool Whip or whip cream.  Enjoy!

* Note:  While Mincie's method involved the use of a drinking glass to roll out her biscuits, yours does not have to.

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