Strawberry shortcake is one of my absolute favorite summertime desserts. Did you know you can make it in just a few minutes? It seems impressive and complicated, but is actually really simple.
It’s also really easy to scale up or down. Strawberry shortcake for one? Sign me up! Having friends over? No problem. I can’t wait to share the recipe with you so you can enjoy delicious strawberry shortcake as much as possible. Even if you don’t have guests.
Strawberry shortcake on any scale
There are really just four things you need for delicious strawberry shortcake:
- Biscuits (American-style)
- Fresh strawberries (about 6-8 berries (or more) per person, depending upon size)
- Heavy cream (aka: whipping cream or full-fat cream)
- Sugar (a little)
If the thought of making biscuits sends you into a panic as you visualize the kitchen coated in flour, don’t worry. Drop biscuits work really well for strawberry shortcake, and they’re virtually mess-free. You can also freeze any leftovers, as soon as they cool, to have for next time.
If you are making your own biscuits, then the first thing you need to do, is to pre-heat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
Prepare the strawberries
While the oven is pre-heating, you can macerate the strawberries. First, wash the strawberries and remove the stems. Then, cut them into quarters or other bite-size pieces. Put the cut strawberries into a bowl and add a little bit of sugar. The trick is to sweeten the berries just enough that they form a sauce, without masking the natural strawberry flavor. This is how much sugar I use for a single serving:
Stir the strawberries and sugar until a sauce starts to form:
Then, let them sit and macerate while you make the biscuits and whipped cream.
For the biscuits
You can use any biscuit recipe you like for strawberry shortcake. Just add 1 Tablespoon of sugar to the dough to sweeten it slightly. If you don’t have a favorite biscuit recipe, here is a very basic one for drop biscuits:
In a large bowl, sift together:
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 Tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 teaspoons double-acting baking powder
Cut-in, using a pastry blender or two knives:
- 4-6 Tablespoons of chilled butter
Keep blending/cutting-in until the consistency is like course meal. Then add:
- 1 cup milk
Mix together for one minute or less. The batter should be blended and slightly glutenous, but will still have small lumps.
Drop by large spoonfuls onto a baking tray, about 1-2 inches apart. You should have 10-12 large biscuits. They will look lumpy and uneven, but that’s ok. No one is going to see them under the strawberries and whipped cream.
Bake for 12-14 minutes, until they’re golden on top and cooked-through. Be careful not to let them get too brown. If the biscuits are cooked for too long they’ll still be tasty, but a little tough to cut in the bowl of shortcake.
Take the cooked biscuits out of the oven and let them cool slightly.
Whipping cream for strawberry shortcake
While your biscuits are cooking and cooling, and the strawberries are macerating, you can make the whipped cream. Now, you may be secretly thinking: ‘I’ll just skip this step and use ready-made whipped cream,’ not knowing how good homemade whipped cream really is. You will be missing-out. Homemade whipped cream is so much smoother, creamier, and more delicious than ready-made. It’s worth the little extra effort. Plus, you can control how much sugar you add so it’s not too sweet.
To make homemade whipped cream
Pour 2-3 Tablespoons of whipping cream per person into a small bowl (with tall sides). Using a wire whip, whip vigorously for 2-3 minutes, until soft peaks form.
Tip: Organic whipping cream whips-up a lot faster than conventional cream. I have no idea why, since the fat content is the same, but it works every time.
Next, add a little sugar. About 1 scant teaspoon per person to start. Whip again until the cream forms peaks that hold, then test for sweetness. If you need to add more sugar, then just whip a tiny bit more to blend it in.
To make a single serving of whipped cream
It’s a little bit difficult to whip just 2-3 Tablespoons of cream in a bowl that’s big enough to contain the splashing. However, a tall glass works really well. I was so excited when I tried this and it worked!
Just pour the cream into a tall glass instead of a bowl. Then, roll the whip back and forth between your palms to spin it, like you’re a cartoon character trying to start a campfire:
Look for peaks and follow the same guidelines for when to add the sugar. It does take a little bit longer than whipping cream in a bowl, probably because you can’t whip quite as wildly, but it works.
Assembling the strawberry shortcake
Now that you have all three parts finished, it’s time to turn it into strawberry shortcake. Simply place a biscuit in a bowl:
Give the macerated strawberries one more stir to make sure the juices and sugars are mixed evenly. Then, pour the macerated strawberries and sauce over the biscuit and add a healthy dollop of whipped cream:
Tips and tricks:
- Macerated strawberries will keep 1-2 days in the fridge, but will look more like strawberry sauce on day 3.
- Whipped cream will keep for 1-2 days as well. Simply whip again, right before serving, until it holds peaks.
- Biscuits can be frozen as soon as they’re cooled, then reheated. Either leave them on a counter to thaw, or put them in a toaster oven for 3-5 minutes at about 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you didn’t manage to use all of your strawberries making strawberry shortcake, you can also make low-sugar strawberry jam. Follow this link for the quick and easy Creatorvox recipe.
I hope you enjoy making this simple and delicious strawberry shortcake many, many times while fresh strawberries are available.
As always, feel free to ask questions or leave comments. Don’t forget to subscribe to Creatorvox to get new posts right in your email. You can also follow Creatorvox on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for more tips and tricks between posts. Thanks for reading, and happy making!