Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Strawberry Shortcakes

Strawberry and Ricotta Shortcakes

As much as strawberry shortcakes are a childhood favourite for many people, it was something I never grew up with. The only strawberry shortcake I was familiar with was the cartoon character. Some of you might remember her and some of you might not want to admit you remember her.

While perusing the pages of Good Living online, I came across a Steve Manfredi recipe for Strawberry and Ricotta Shortcakes. I knew I had to satiate my curiosity for these shortcakes, and especially when strawberries are so cheap right now.

Strawberry and Ricotta Cream

I told you about how I almost ran off the side of the road when I saw that they were selling asparagus for 69 cents a bunch, well strawberries aren’t that cheap but they are in season so what that means is that they are at their most bountiful and most fragrant.

I’m not one that fully ascribes to eating everything organic; frankly I think there needs to also be an emphasis on eating and buying local as organic isn’t necessarily always the best choice. But I have to admit that when it comes to strawberries, I think that organic is far superior.

Strawberry and Ricotta Shortcakes

The great thing about these strawberries is that they are organic and locally produced, jackpot! They might not be as super-sized as the non-organic versions however I have found that they are softer, juicier and more aromatic. I can’t remember who gave me this advice, but when shopping for strawberries if you can’t smell them then they probably aren’t worth buying. This is mantra I have shopped for strawberries with.

Strawberry and Ricotta Shortcakes

serves 9
from SMH Good Living

Strawberry and Ricotta Shortcakes

FOR THE SHORTCAKES
230g plain flour
60g caster sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
Pinch salt
80g unsalted butter, cold, cut into 2cm cubes
160ml thickened cream

FOR THE RICOTTA CREAM
250ml thick cream
2 tbsp caster sugar
125g ricotta
1 tsp vanilla essence

FOR THE FILLING
300g medium-sized strawberries, hulled and halved lengthways
Icing sugar for dusting

First, make the shortcakes. With an electric mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
Add the butter and beat until the mixture looks like coarse meal.
Add the cream and beat until the mixture comes together.
Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and form into a 15cm square about 3cm thick. Refrigerate for an hour.

Preheat the oven to 180C.
Using a 5cm biscuit ring, cut out 9 cakes.
Place on a baking tray and bake for 20-25 minutes until brown.
Cool on a cake rack.

Make the ricotta cream by whipping the thickened cream with the sugar.
Fold in the ricotta and vanilla.
Slice each shortcake in half and fill with the strawberries and ricotta cream.
Dust with icing sugar.

34 comments:

Hannah said...

Wow, how lovely. I have yet to ever try a strawberry shortcake myself, but now this post makes me want to, asap!

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

That's a test I apply to most any fruit or veggie!
Really like the ricotto in the shortcakes. Great photos.

Gretchen Noelle said...

These look absolutely delicious! Cannot wait to try them! And I am proud to admit that Strawberry Shortcake was also part of my childhood!

Dana said...

I'm with you on the organic vs. local distinction. It depends on the fruit or vegetable, but often times I find local conventional produce tastes better than organic produce flown in from hundreds of miles away. This recipe looks delicious, though, and the strawberries look beautiful!

Anita said...

I wrote about the Strawberry Shortcake doll when I posted on strawberry shortcakes as well! I did love her, but I think now I prefer the edible kind! Yours look wonderful!

Cris said...

Strawberry shortcakes... one of my favorite desserts... that I only know because I have lived abroad.. no one knows this delicious treat here...

CollyWolly said...

Ooooohhh Yum!!! They look absolutely divine. Yes, I remember that cute li'l girl Strawberry Shortcake......my kids were very into her :) I have to try this recipe soon. Thanks for posting it.

VeggieGirl said...

haha, yes, I'll admit, I DO remember the Strawberry Shortcake cartoon character, from my childhood :0)

I agree - buying local is the best choice when organic isn't available; or is the best choice, period!

such beautiful shortcakes here - delish!

Hillary said...

Those strawberry shortcakes are quite possibly the most gorgeous strawberry shortcakes I have ever seen. Thank you for sharing this recipe - it's fantastic and makes for some gorgeous pictures.

Abby said...

Lovely photos! I grew up eating a lot of strawberry shortcake bc my grandparents had a strawberry patch, and later my dad did, too. But we always used spongecake, which I didn't like. I'd always ask for a bowl of milk and strawberries, instead! Yours look much better!

tytty said...

I remember I had a huge strawberry shortcake doll when i was a kid (:

the idea of ricotta with cream sounds cool

Jerry said...

Lovely as usual. Too bad strawberries aren't in season in Texas

Katie said...

I never grew up on shortcakes either, but those look simply delicious.

Eva said...

That looks so refreshing and indulgent at the same time! I have never ever eaten a shortcake in my life, so maybe I should do it now..;-)

Patricia Scarpin said...

I have never tried strawberry shortcakes, Jenjen, for they are not something common here. Yours look wonderful!

Christina at Ramble Magazine said...

My first visit to your site and I'm served a cardiovascular nightmare. They do look amazing, though. Perhaps I should ... for tonight ... :-)

Valérie la gourmande bleue said...

so lovely ans delicious!!!

stickyfingers said...

what a beautiful looking post. Think I'll have to try out that recipe - thanks!

Gloria said...

Oohh They look delicious!!! almost to eat the PC, really. and strawberries, delicious. Gloria

Jenn said...

I really love your photographs, they make me want to make try everything in them!

www.chocolateshavings.ca

Nan said...

OH, gosh. Strawberry shortcakes are just one of those amazing comfort foods...you can't go wrong. These look really delicious!

Christy said...

The only strawberry shortcake I have ever eaten is the kinda on the spongy, yellow cake from the grocery store. Somehow I do believe that these would be slightly superior.

Nabeela said...

oh how you tease us with strawberries when there is no hope for us at least for a few more months :)

marias23 said...

Very beautiful! They way you presented your strawberry shortcakes reminds me of Pierre Herme's elegant maccarons in Paris.

Half Baked said...

my family has an organic srawberry farm, so I have to agree that the organic berries are far better! I LOVE strawberry shortcake . It's one of my all time favorites. your pictures are beautiful! I look forward to trying this recipe when our berries are in season.

Hungry Hamster said...

They are gorgeous!! I'm used to those Japanese Strawberry Shortcakes made with sponge cake. This looks great, can't wait to try my hands on them!

Amy said...

These look beautiful! Strawberry season is a great time. :)

Ashlee said...

Wow I only just discovered your blog and I love it. The pictures and amazing, and these look just divine!! I've linked you to my blog so the sweet treats are only a click away...

ovenhaven said...

Like Pat, I've never tried strawberry shortcakes before as they're not common here. But I have to say that I grew up with Strawberry Shortcake, and had its doll that smelled like strawberries! Great photos as always, Jenjen. You make me wanna try out alot of new things through your blog :)

Veggies.... said...

Absolutely beautiful!!! What glorious photos you take Jen, well done. This looks as good as it tastes Im sure....yummmmmmmmmmm

crispy crust said...

that looks delicious. i definitely want to try it and see how it turns out ^^

didally said...

These mini shortcakes looks so pretty. Anything minature is cute for me.

:cheese: said...

i was looking up something about dessert and i came across ur blog. i just want to tell u that you are an amaaaazzzziinnnng photographer. all of ur pictures make me drool!

i have yet to try any of ur recipes but i would love to. just a question, do u come up with all the recipes urself?? anyway...u are so cool! haha :]

Bruno said...

Lovely little cakes jenjen!

Bruno