once upon a chef

Strawberry Shortcake


              FOR THE BISCUITS – 2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off – 3 tablespoons cornstarch – 1 tablespoon baking powder – ¼ teaspoon baking soda – 2 tablespoons granulated sugar – 1 teaspoon salt – 10 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch chunks – ¾ cup buttermilk (see note) – 2 tablespoons turbinado sugar           FOR THE STRAWBERRIES – 2 pounds strawberries, hulled and sliced ¼-inch thick – 3 tablespoons seedless raspberry jam – ½ cup granulated sugar          FOR THE WHIPPED CREAM – 1½ cups heavy cream – 3 tablespoons granulated sugar

Tender, sugar-crusted biscuits filled with macerated strawberries and fresh whipped cream, strawberry shortcake is a must during the spring and summer months. It’s best when all of the components are made from scratch (ditch the store-bought pound cake and whipped topping!), using the juiciest, sweetest strawberries you can find.


Begin by making the biscuits my secret is to add a little cornstarch to the flour to get the ultra-tender, melt-in-your-mouth effect.


In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, granulated sugar, and salt. Add the pieces of cold butter.


Use your fingertips to rub the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs with pea-sized clumps of butter within.


It should look like this.


Add the buttermilk. (Note: If you’d rather not buy a whole carton of buttermilk for this recipe, it’s easy to make your own. Simply add 2-1/2 teaspoons of lemon juice or white vinegar to a liquid measuring cup. Then add milk to the 3/4-cup line and let sit for 10 to 15 minutes, or until slightly curdled and thickened.)


Stir with a rubber spatula until the dough comes together into a sticky, shaggy mass. Do not overmix.

Pour the batter on top of the crustWith lightly floured hands, form the dough into 8 craggy-looking balls and place on the prepared baking sheet. (They should be bigger than golf balls but smaller than tennis balls.) Don’t worry about making them perfect — it’s better if they are a little rough around the edges. Sprinkle the tops with the turbinado sugar.



Bake for 13 to 15 minutes, until the biscuits are golden. Set aside to cool. While the biscuits cool, prepare the strawberries.


Put one-third of the berries in a medium bowl and, using a potato masher or a fork, mash them into a chunky purée.


Mix in the remaining berries, along with the raspberry jam and granulated sugar then let the berries sit at room temperature for about 10 minutes, until saucy.


Meanwhile, make the whipped cream. In an electric mixer or by hand, whip the heavy cream until soft peaks form, then sprinkle the sugar over the cream and beat until soft peaks return. Do not overbeat.


Using a serrated knife, split the biscuits in half horizontally and transfer the bottoms to 8 dessert plates. Spoon about three-quarters of the macerated berries and their juice evenly over the biscuit bottoms. Let some of the berries spill out onto the plate. Top with a generous dollop of whipped cream and cover each with a biscuit top. Spoon more berries and cream over each shortcake and serve immediately.