Friday, 14 June 2013

Strawberry Shortcake

June is synonymous with strawberries....I picked up a quart of fresh Ontario strawberries last evening and briefly considered picking up some angel food cake and whipped cream, but then was struck by the thought - why don't I try to make the shortcake myself?  Looked up a couple of recipes online, seems simple enough, actually - very similar to the scones I made earlier this week.

So here you are:  homemade from scratch Shortcakes...I might add a couple tbsp of shortening next time, or use cream instead of milk. I also may have over baked them a tad - I suggest checking on them about 12 minutes in, or reducing the oven temperature a bit.


2 cups all purpose flour, sifted
1 tbsp baking powder
3 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter, cold and cubed
3/4 cup milk or cream

Combine flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt.  Add in cubed butter and mix together, breaking down the butter cubes with your hands until pea-sized.  Make a well in the middle and pour in the milk or cream, mixing with a fork until just combined.  Form a ball of dough and turn out onto a well floured surface, kneading dough only 2-3 times.  Don't overwork the dough.  Flatten into a rectangular disc about 3/4 inch thick and cut into squares or use a floured round biscuit cutter.

                                                                                                                                                                                  The recipes I used said to put it on a greased cookie sheet with foil on it, but I just used a non-stick cookie sheet and it was fine.  Brush with milk and sprinkle with sugar.  Bake at 425 degrees for about 12-15 minutes or until done.

Slice in half with a serrated knife and serve with desired amount of sliced strawberries and whipped cream!

Monday, 10 June 2013

Simple Sour Cream Scones's been a while....
I was out sick with a nasty cold and then off travelling (London, Amsterdam, Bruges!) and I now I am finally back to feeling normal - and back to feeling like baking again.  I have a bunch of ideas up my sleeve from my travels - but first things first. Did I ever mention that I love jam?  All kinds of jam, every kind of jam....this past weekend we were in Niagara-on-the-Lake and I stopped at Greaves and picked up some Cherry jam.  I fell in love with Cherry jam while travelling in the Middle East a decade ago...but that is a story for another day.  

Cherry jam deserves fresh home baked scones....and these are the best I have ever made.  Light and fluffy interior - crisp crunchy exterior, and absolutely freaking delicious with a smear of jam....

Simple Sour Cream Scones

2 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp white sugar
1/2 cup cold butter
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup milk

Combine flour, baking powder, salt and sugar in a large bowl.  Add in cubed cold butter and break it up and mix it with your hands until butter bits are the size of pebbles and coated in flour.  Add in sour cream and milk and mix with a wooden spoon until just combined.  Form dough into ball and place on floured wax paper.   Knead dough slightly (the less you touch the dough, the better) and pat down into large oval disc, kneading into about 1/2 inch thick.

Place dough onto baking sheet and divide like a pizza, into 8-10 triangles, depending on how large you like your scones.  Brush with egg white and sprinkle with sugar.  Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes.