Tuesday, April 22, 2008

sweets for the sweet

Strawberry shortcake is so simple and so very yummy. Since I was raised in the south, I believed that strawberry shortcake had to be made with biscuits but this is not really true. I used a homemade lemon pound cake for this one. There are plenty of good quality store bought pound cakes out there but I did not have one of those. I did have all the ingredients to make a pound cake and honestly, I am such an introvert that it is easier and far more pleasurable for me to make a pound cake than to go to Food Lion to buy one. This is the pound cake recipe that I taught the culinary campers last summer. We made a mixed berry trifle from it that had the best lemon curd ever! Now I am thinking of lemon curd... back to the strawberry shortcake.

Strawberry shortcake
1 pound cake from a 6 cup loaf pan - here is a great recipe from Gale Gand. I miss Gale Gand so much since she is no longer on Food TV. I really did enjoy her show. I miss Ming Tsai, also. I never cooked any of his recipes, but I thought he was so likable, unassuming and handsome.
Back to the recipe.
2 pints of fresh, ripe strawberries, sliced
2 tablespoons of sugar
1 cup of heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons of 10x sugar
1 teaspoon of real vanilla extract

I like to take about 1/4 of the strawberries and just cover them with water in a small sauce pan with the granulated sugar. Bring this to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Once the strawberries are mushy, I mash them a little with a fork or put them in the blender. Pour this over the other sliced strawberries in a bowl.

Whip the cream to soft peaks and then add the confectioners' sugar and vanilla and whip to stiff peaks.

The rest is just assembly - slice the pound cake and place in the bottom of a dessert bowl, top with strawberries and whipped cream, repeat this process again so there are two layers of each ending with the cream. Whipped cream might be one of the very best things on earth! I know that some like to build strawberry shortcake well ahead of time so it turns into a type of pudding to be dished out but I prefer mine in individual bowls and made right before eating.

My husband so enjoys desserts like this. He had the pound cake with mint chocolate chip ice cream and whipped cream once the strawberries were gone and for the last two mornings, he has had a slice of the pound cake with breakfast. Funny guy!

And yes, that is my living room in the back ground. It was a lovely, sunny day!

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