Thursday, August 6, 2009

A different take on strawberry shortcake

I posted about one of my favorite summer desserts, strawberry shortcake, back in May, using a quick shortbread biscuit (see that recipe here). While strawberry season is over here in the Pioneer Valley, I had the good sense to freeze a bunch while they were in season - and I decided to try a different kind of strawberry shortcake this weekend. Instead of using the biscuits, I made a light yellow cake (kind of a cross between a sponge cake and a pound cake) and then cut it into individual servings with a big cookie cutter.

As you can see, the cake soaked up the juices from the strawberries very well. And the lightness of it made this version of the dessert a little less heavy than the biscuit version. But honestly, I think both versions are great! Strawberries, cake & whipped cream? How could you go wrong?! Best of all, the cake recipe is super simple:

1 stick (1/2 c.) butter, softened
1/2 c. vanilla-infused sugar*
2 eggs
1 c. flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8"x8" baking pan.
Beat butter and sugar until fluffy.
Beat in eggs one at a time.
In a small bowl, sift together flour, baking soda and salt. Add to butter/sugar mixture and beat on low speed just until combined (don't over mix).
Pour into pan and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, or until toothpick inserted comes out clean.
Cool 15-20 minutes before turning cake out of pan to cook completely.

To make the strawberry short cake: Cut out individual servings with a round (or as in my case, flower-shaped) cookie cutter once cake is fully cooled. Top with strawberries & whipped cream!

*I make vanilla-infused sugar by combining 1 spent vanilla bean (i.e. already cut open and seeds removed) with 1 1/2-2 c. flour in a glass jar and letting it sit for at least a week for the vanilla to permeate the sugar. If you don't have this on hand, use 1/2 c. regular sugar and 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract.


CaptnRachel aka Tha Pizza Cutta said...

this is one of my fav summer desserts-well done!

Jenn said...

Lovely. Strawberry shortcakes are definitely a great summer treat.

Teresa Cordero Cordell said...

Hey there Valley girl, how's everything going? You are a life saver, did you know that? This dessert is perfect for my honey and me now that both my kids have moved to Dallas. I'm still trying to figure out the old cooking for one or two and you just help me out. A BIG thank you. :)

ValleyWriter said...

Things are going pretty well for me, Teresa. I take it day by day, but always keep a positive outlook!

Glad to be of help with cooking for fewer people. With just my husband and I to cook for most of the time, I've gotten used to it!

Anonymous said...

This strawberry shortcake looks delicious! I would love to try this version!

Cookin' Canuck said...

I love how the cake soaks up the strawberry juices. This would also be great one a bigger scale, in a trifle dish.

ValleyWriter said...

Mmmm... the trifle sounds like a great idea! Though you'd have to serve it right away, as the cake really does soak up the liquid quickly.

Jackie at said...

oh boy, this dessert looks good. What a wonderful presentation! my mouth is watering

Miranda said...

I am saving this!!!
My husband loves Strawberry Shortcake, but I have never made this dish.

Very lovely and thank you.

Diana Bauman said...

Oh, yumm!! This looks fabulous!! I'm going to have to make this with some of my frozen berries :)