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Strawberry Shortcakes

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Strawberry season is in full bloom! The abundance of these sweet, ripe fruits — combined with the fact that today is National Strawberry Shortcake Day — means it’s a perfect weekend to start baking. Here’s our go-to recipe for classic, golden shortcakes, filled with whipped cream and sugared strawberries.

 

Strawberry Shortcakes

For the dough:

2 cups (10 oz./315 g) unbleached all-purpose flour

1/4 cup (2 oz./60 g) granulated sugar

1 Tbs. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 cup (1 stick/4 oz./125 g) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch (12-mm) pieces

1 large egg

1/3 cup (3 fl. oz./80 ml) heavy cream, plus more as needed

2 Tbs. turbinado sugar

For the filling:

2 pints (1 lb./500 g) strawberries, hulled and sliced

3 Tbs. granulated sugar

Whipped cream for serving

Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C). Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. 

In a bowl, using a fork, stir together the flour, granulated sugar, baking powder and salt. Add the butter and toss it well to coat with the flour mixture. Using a pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in the butter just until the mixture forms large, coarse crumbs the size of small peas. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and the 1/3 cup (3 fl. oz./80 ml) cream until blended. Pour the egg mixture over the flour mixture and mix with a rubber spatula just until moistened.

Add additional cream, 1 tablespoon at a time, as needed to form a soft dough that is wet enough to be dropped from a spoon.

Using a large spoon, drop the dough onto the prepared baking sheet in mounds about 3 inches (7.5 cm.) wide and about 3/4 inch (2 cm.) high, spacing them 1 inch (2.5 cm.) apart. You should have about 8 shortcakes. Brush the tops of the shortcakes with 1-2 tablespoons cream and sprinkle with the turbinado sugar. Bake until the shortcakes are firm to the touch and golden-brown, 12-15 minutes.

While the shortcakes are baking, prepare the filling. In a bowl, using a fork, crush 1 cup (4 oz./125 g) of the berries. Add the remaining berries and the granulated sugar, mix well, and set aside. Transfer the shortcakes from the baking sheet to a wire rack and let cool for 15 minutes.

To serve, split the warm shortcakes horizontally and place the bottom half of each, cut side up, on a plate. Spoon the berries on top, dividing them evenly. Top each with some whipped cream. Cover with the shortcake tops and serve right away. Serves 8.

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Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta with Roasted Rhubarb

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Popular throughout Italy, panna cotta (literally, “cooked cream”) is a delicate dessert with a mild, creamy flavor. Often paired with seasonal fruit, the silky custard is particularly good served with a brightly flavored sweet-tart rhubarb compote.

Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta with Roasted Rhubarb

 

For the panna cotta:

4 cups (32 fl. oz./1 l) heavy cream

2/3 cup (5 oz./155 g) sugar

1/2 vanilla bean

1 envelope (1/4 oz./7 g) unflavored gelatin

 

For the compote:

1 lb. (500 g) rhubarb, trimmed and thinly sliced (4 to 5 cups)

1 cup (8 oz./250 g) sugar

1/2 vanilla bean

 

To make the panna cotta, in a large saucepan, combine the cream and sugar. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean half into the cream mixture and add the pod. Cook over medium heat until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is almost at a simmer, about 7 minutes. Remove from the heat, cover and let steep for 20 minutes. Pour 3 Tbs. water into a small bowl. Sprinkle the gelatin over the water and let stand for 5 minutes.

 

Uncover the cream and bring just to a simmer over medium heat. Gently whisk in the gelatin mixture, then remove from the heat. Discard the vanilla bean pod. Pour the panna cotta into 8 dessert cups or into a decorative bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until completely set, at least 3 hours and up to overnight.

 

Meanwhile, make the rhubarb compote: Preheat an oven to 375°F (190°C). In a baking dish, combine the rhubarb, sugar and vanilla bean half. Cover with aluminum foil and bake until the rhubarb is very tender, about 45 minutes. Let cool slightly. Discard the vanilla bean.

 

Unmold the panna cotta onto small dessert plates, spoon a little of the rhubarb compote onto each serving and serve. Serves 8.

 

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Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie

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Here we take advantage of the fresh rhubarb that is arriving in the farmers’ markets in many parts of the country. Technically a vegetable, rhubarb is treated like a fruit and is traditionally paired with strawberries, which complement its tart flavor. Slice the rhubarb no wider than 1/2 inch (12 mm) thick to avoid a stringy texture, and make sure to discard the mildly toxic leaves.

Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie

For the crust:

2 cups (10 oz./315 g) all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1 Tbs. sugar

3/4 cup (6 oz./185 g) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces

1/2 cup (4 fl. oz./125 ml) ice water, plus more if needed

 

For the filling:

1 1/2 cups (12 oz./375 g) sugar

2 Tbs. cornstarch

2 Tbs. quick-cooking tapioca

Pinch of kosher salt

4 cups (1 lb./500 g) strawberries, hulled and quartered lengthwise

8 rhubarb stalks, cut into 1⁄2-inch (12-mm) pieces (about 4 1/2 cups/22 oz./690 g)

1 Tbs. cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

 

To make the crust, in the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, salt and sugar. Sprinkle the butter over the top and pulse for a few seconds, or just until the butter is slightly broken up into the flour but still in visible pieces. Evenly sprinkle the water over the flour mixture, then process just until the mixture starts to come together. Dump the dough into a large resealable plastic bag and press into a flat disk. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 day before using, or freeze for up to 1 month.

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and cut in half. Roll each half into a round at least 12 inches (30 cm) in diameter and about 1⁄8 inch (3 mm) thick. Transfer one round to a 9-inch (23-cm) pie pan and ease into the pan. Trim the edge, leaving a 3⁄4-inch (2-cm) overhang. Set the second dough round in a cool place until ready to use.

 

In a small bowl, stir together the sugar, cornstarch, tapioca, and salt. Place the strawberries and rhubarb in a large bowl, sprinkle with the sugar mixture, and toss to distribute evenly. Transfer to the dough-lined pan. Dot with the butter.

 

Position the reserved dough round over the filled pie. Trim the edge, leaving a 1-inch (2.5-cm) overhang. Fold under the edge of the bottom round and crimp to seal. Using a knife, cut a hole or slits in the top. Refrigerate until the dough is firm, 20 to 30 minutes.

 

Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Bake the pie until the crust is golden and the filling is thick and bubbling, 50 to 60 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely. Serve with scoops of vanilla ice cream, if you like. Serves 6 to 8.

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Best of the Web: Ice Cream

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We love ice cream — and we’re not the only ones. As temperatures rise, we have seen meltingly delicious dessert inspiration from some of our favorite bloggers. From fresh fruit and fro-yo to spices — and, yes, bacon — here’s a roundup of frozen treats we can’t wait to make this summer.

 

Mint Chocolate Chip Ice CreamMint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream by Cooking Classy
Fresh mint gives natural flavor to this ice cream, dotted with chopped bittersweet chocolate.
Cinnamon Ice CreamCinnamon Ice Cream by The Pioneer Woman
Real vanilla beans and whole cinnamon sticks take this sweet, spiced ice cream to the next level.
Roasted Strawberry Vanilla Bean Frozen YogurtRoasted Strawberry Vanilla Bean Frozen Yogurtby Completely Delicious
You only need four ingredients to make this gorgeous frozen yogurt — no custard required!
Devils on Horseback Ice CreamDevils on Horseback Ice Cream by Lady and Pups
Bacon-wrapped dates are the inspiration for this sweet-salty combo, enriched with bacon fat, crispy bacon bits and brandy-soaked dates.
Peanut Butter Fudge Ice Cream SandwichesPeanut Butter Fudge Ice Cream Sandwiches by The Sugar Hit
You can use prepared or scratch vanilla ice cream to make these treats of soft chocolate cookies and ice cream with chunks of peanut butter fudge.
Vegan Toasted Coconut and Pistachio Ice CreamVegan Toasted Coconut and Pistachio Ice Creamby Joy the Baker
Here’s a light, dairy-free ice cream you can make almost entirely with pantry staples, packed with chunks of toasted coconut and salted pistachios.
Blackberry Ice CreamBlackberry Ice Cream by Bon Appetempt!
A super simple blackberry puree combines with a classic sweet cream base to create this summertime scoop.
Honeyed Buttermilk and Chamomile Ice CreamHoneyed Buttermilk and Chamomile Ice Creamby A Sweet Spoonful
Infusing cream with chamomile flowers gives it a lovely, herbal taste that perfectly complements tangy buttermilk and honey.
Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice CreamDark Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream by Hungry Girl por Vida
This rich, dark chocolate ice cream has swirls of peanut butter shell for a sweet-salty contrast.
Simple Strawberry Ice CreamSimple Strawberry Ice Cream by Delightful Crumb
This ice cream is like magic: you don’t even need an ice cream maker. It’s the ideal canvas to let summer berries shine.
Salted Caramel Ice Cream with Honey Pecan PralinesSalted Caramel Ice Cream with Honey Pecan Pralines by Sifting Focus
Here’s a marriage made in ice cream heaven: deep salted caramel and sweet, crunchy, nutty praline.
White Pine and Rosemary Ice CreamWhite Pine and Rosemary Ice Cream by Apt. 2B Baking Co.
That’s right: pine! Its bright, earthy, citrusy flavor makes for a crisp counterpoint to rich ice cream.
Honey & Cornbread Ice CreamHoney & Cornbread Ice Cream by Take a Megabite
Speaking of unexpected combinations, this recipe makes a honey ice cream with cornbread mixed in — great for a BBQ!
Strawberry Lemonade Frozen YogurtStrawberry Lemonade Frozen Yogurt by Kitchen Simplicity
Fresh strawberries, tart lemon juice, and creamy, bright Greek yogurt — this is no ordinary fro-yo.
Double Chocolate Ice Cream with Cookie PiecesDouble Chocolate Ice Cream with Cookie Piecesby Baked by Rachel
Intense, double chocolate ice cream meets a host of chocolate cookie chunks in this chocoholic’s dream.