Fresh Berry Shortcakes

 Beautiful Desserts

Yield:
10

Ingredients

shortcakes

  • 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar

  • 2 tablespoons baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated orange zest

  • Pinch of salt

  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise

  • 1 1/2 sticks (6 ounces) cold unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons, plus 2 tablespoons, melted

  • 1 1/2 cups cold heavy cream

filling

  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise

  • 1/4 cup sugar

  • 2 pints strawberries, halved

  • 1/4 cup cold heavy cream

  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°. In a large bowl, sift the flour with 1/2 cup of the sugar and the baking powder. Add the orange zest and salt and scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean into the bowl. Cut in the 1 1/2 sticks of butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the cream and mix until a dough forms.

  2. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a 3/4-inch thickness. Using a 2-inch round biscuit cutter, stamp out 10 rounds. Set the rounds on a baking sheet and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes and up to several hours.

  3. Brush the rounds with the melted butter and sprinkle the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar on top. Bake the shortcakes for about 20 minutes, or until golden all over. Transfer to a rack and let cool for at least 15 minutes.

  4. Scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean into a small bowl and stir in 3 tablespoons of the sugar. Add the strawberries and toss. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

  5. In a medium bowl, whip the cream with the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar and the vanilla extract. Cut the shortcakes in half and set the bottoms on plates. Top each with a dollop of whipped cream and a large spoonful of strawberries. Cover with the shortcake tops and serve at once.

Make Ahead

The shortcakes can be baked up to 4 hours ahead.

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