Monday, April 18, 2011
Strawberries are finally back down to a reasonable price so I am sharing my favorite dessert recipe. I originally got this recipe from Family Circle magazine and it comes from their May 2004 issue but I can't find it anywhere on their website or elsewhere online. I don't normally eat shortcake but this reminds me of a chocolate lover's alternative to the summertime dessert. It is actually considered a chocolate biscuit and this recipe makes enough to share so be sure to invite your friends over for some dessert!
1 pint strawberries sliced
1/2 pint raspberries
1 cup sugar
2 cups flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons of chilled unsalted butter, cut into chunks
1/2 to 3/4 cup of milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup of heavy cream whipped (add sugar and vanilla to taste)
chocolate shavings for garnish (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. My oven always seems to cook things faster so I heat mine only to 420.
2. Taste your strawberries and decide if they are sweet enough. Sometimes they are perfect just the way they are but if they are tart, sprinkle them with 1/4 cup of the sugar and stir them occasionally.
3. The easiest (and least messy) way for me to make this in the food processor but you could also do it by hand. Add the flour, 3/4 cup of sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Mix together and then add the chilled butter. I let my food processor run until the mixture looks like wet sand. I slowly add the milk and vanilla while the food processor is running and turn it off as soon as the mixture comes together. You don't want to overmix it or the dough will get tough.
4. Turn the dough out onto a floured surfaced and roll to 1/2 inch thickness. Depending on the occasion, I use different cookie cutters to cut mine out.
5. Bake for 10 minutes or until set in the center. If you overbake these, they will get to brown on the bottom so keep an eye on them!
6. I serve mine with whatever fruit is on sale - strawberries, raspberries, blackberries or a combination of those three! Top with a healthy dollop of homemade whipped cream and chocolate shavings. The whipped cream is even better if you make it with vanilla paste. I love the taste of vanilla and the whipped cream looks really pretty with all the speckles of vanilla bean in it.
This should make about 8 servings but it really depends on the size of cookie cutters you use.
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