Copyright Thomas Saaristo  All Rights Reserved
Strawberry shortcakes
The classic American summer dessert, fresh summer strawberries on shortcake

Homemade shortcake is far and away superior to the sponge-like cakes found in the
supermarket. The secret to a tender biscuit is to add an egg and just enough rich milk
to bind the dough together

If you prefer to make the shortcake dough in the food processor, pulse the dry
ingredients to combine them, then add cold butter that has been cut into half inch
pieces and continue to pulse until the mixture looks like coarse cornmeal flecked with
pea-sized bits of butter. Pour the mixture into a bowl; stir in the egg and Half & Half
with a rubber spatula until the mixture comes together. Continue with step 4 of the
recipe instructions


For the topping
3 pints strawberries, hulled; 1 pint crushed with potato masher or fork, 2 pints
quartered 6 tablespoons sugar

For the shortcakes
2 cups flour, plus more for work surface and biscuit cutter
1/2 teaspoon Extra fine salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
3 tablespoons sugar, plus 2 tablespoons for sprinkling
8 tablespoons butter, frozen
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon Half & Half
1 egg white, lightly beaten

Mix crushed and quartered berries with sugar in medium bowl; set aside while
preparing biscuits, or up to 2 hours

Adjust oven rack to lower middle position; heat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit

Mix flour, salt, baking powder, and 3 tablespoons sugar in medium bowl. Using
large holes of box grater, grate butter into dry ingredients. Toss butter with flour to
coat. Use pastry cutter to finish cutting butter into flour. Or scoop up coated butter
with both hands, then quickly rub butter into dry ingredients with fingertips until
most of butter pieces are size of split peas

Mix beaten egg with Half & Half; pour into flour mixture. Toss with fork until large
clumps form. Turn mixture onto floured work surface and lightly knead until it comes

Pat dough into 9 x 6 inch rectangle, 3/4 inch thick. Flour 2 3/4 inch biscuit cutter; cut 6
dough rounds. Place 1 inch apart on small baking sheet; brush dough tops with egg
white and sprinkle with remaining sugar

Make ahead
Prepare, cover and refrigerate up to 2 hours before baking

Bake until golden brown, 12 to 14 minutes. Place baking sheet on wire rack; cool cakes
until warm, about 10 minutes

Split each cake crosswise; spoon a portion of berries and then a dollop of whipped
cream over each cake bottom. Top with cake cap and  serve immediately