Over the past few months, we’ve been asking Chef Dimitri to share some recipe inspiration with us – but when it came time to focus on strawberries, we knew we wanted to go the dessert route. We asked Jenna of Whisked! for some recommendations and whipped up these delicate strawberry shortcakes – they’re the perfect easy-but-impressive addition to your summer lineup.
Strawberry Basil Shortcakes (Serves 9)
Adapted From Baking Illustrated, by the Editors of Cooks Illustrated Magazine
For the strawberry basil topping
1 lb strawberries, cleaned, halved, add sliced into ⅛ inch slices
1 tbs sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbs basil leaves, finely chopped
Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Let sit for at least half an hour and up to two hours before serving.
For the biscuits
2 cups (10 oz) All Purpose Flour
5 tbs (2.25 oz) sugar
1 tbs baking powder
½ tsp salt
8 tbs (4 oz) unsalted butter, cold, cut into ½ cubes
1 large egg, lightly beaten
½ cup + 1 tbs (4.5 fl oz) half and half or whole milk
1 egg + 1 tbs water (for egg wash)
Preheat oven to 425° F.
In the bowl of a standing mixer, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add the cold butter and beat on low, stopping occasionally to break up any large chunks of butter with your fingers, until the mixture resembles fine crumbs.
Beat together the eggs and half and half or whole milk (you can do this in the measuring cup) until lightly combined. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and beat until a rough dough forms.
Turn the mixture onto a lightly floured work surface and pat into a rectangle, about ¾ inch thick. Cut into 2-inch rounds with a floured biscuit cutter. Place rounds on a parchment-lined baking sheet, 1 inch apart, and lightly brush with egg wash. Bake for 12-14 minutes, until lightly browned, rotating the baking sheet 180° halfway through the bake time.
For the cream
1 cup whipping cream, very cold
2 tbs sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Place the cream in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a whisk attachment and beat until the soft peaks stage. Add the vanilla and sugar and whisk until medium peak stage. Use immediately.
Slice the warm biscuits in half with a serrated knife. Spoon a layer of berries and a layer of whipped cream on one biscuit half. Top with the other half. Spoon a little more whipped cream on the biscuit and top with a strawberry slice. Repeat with remaining biscuits and serve.