I’ve never really been a fan of strawberries. During my childhood, lots of my friends loved strawberries but I never did and I always felt like I was missing out on something delicious. Why, oh why couldn’t I just like strawberries. At picnics, there would always be strawberry shortcake that everyone, except me, would be excited about eating. The strawberries seemed to swim in a goopy sugary mess and the shortcake seemed so very mushy. This just was not my cup of tea. I would eat the whipped cream off the top of a strawberry shortcake but that was about it (who doesn’t love whipped cream). As I got older, I remember seeing strawberry festivals which seemed so summery and fun but I avoided them because I couldn’t pretend to like strawberries. Believe me, I love a good festival so not going was a big deal. I seriously avoided strawberries until one day about eight years ago I decided to try a strawberry to see if it tasted different to me. I was pleasantly surprised. I really liked the strawberry and not even a little bit, I liked it a lot. Slowly over the years I have been eating more and more strawberries. I remember feeling a bit strange the first time I bought a two pound box of strawberries from the grocery store. I thought to myself, “I do really like these”. Now I eat strawberries alone or in salads (I’m sure I’ll post a strawberry salad recipe very soon). Since I missed out on eating strawberry shortcake all those years of my childhood, I felt it was time to make a strawberry shortcake that appealed to me as an adult. I wanted to make a strawberry shortcake that I could take with me to BBQs or eat for dessert on a summer day. I didn’t want a really sweet strawberry shortcake nor did I want the “shortcake” part to be all mushy. For my strawberry shortcake, I created a buttermilk biscuit covered with balsamic vinegar macerated strawberries and vanilla whipped cream. I think I hit the jackpot of taste with my version of strawberry shortcake and I’m calling it Super-Duper Strawberry Shortcake with Balsamic!
To make this recipe, first slice ripe strawberries and add them to a mixing bowl. Stir in the balsamic vinegar, pepper and sugar. If you are a fan of balsamic vinegar, let me just say, it’s fantastic with strawberries. Let the strawberry mixture sit for 30 minutes. While the strawberries macerate, make the buttermilk biscuits. Making homemade buttermilk biscuits is pretty easy thanks to my handy dandy food processor. After sifting the dry ingredients into the food processor, add cubed butter and pulse until the dough resembles rice. Basically, with the food processor your cutting the butter into the dry ingredients. This can also be done with your hands by pinching the butter into the dry ingredients but if you have a food processor is much faster.
Next transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl and add the buttermilk. Stir the dough until the dry ingredients are just wet and then use your hands to form a dough ball. Transfer the dough ball to a lightly floured work surface. Cut the dough ball into four equal pieces. You should have four triangle-ish pieces.
Cut those four pieces in half so you have eight equal triangles.
Form the triangles into roundish pieces about 3 inches in diameter and ½ inch thick. Sprinkle the tops of each uncooked biscuit with course sugar crystals. You can find these in the cake decorating section of your local super market.
Using a biscuit instead of a sponge cake was, for me, a must so I wouldn’t have mushy strawberry shortcake. While your biscuits bake in the oven, whip up the vanilla whipped cream. I had to stop myself from eating too much of this whipped cream so I would have enough to top off the strawberry mixture. ?
This Super-Duper Strawberry Shortcake with Balsamic is so fantastic that if you want a twist on a strawberry shortcake, you must give this a try. Whip these babies up and take them to your next BBQ or make them for your sweetie and then sit back and listen to all the praise you’ll receive about how delicious they are! ?
- 2 pounds fresh strawberries (about 8 cups)
- ½ cup sugar
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 2 cups of cake flour
- 1 ½ tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 ¼ sticks of chilled , cubed butter (10 tablespoons)
- ¾ cups of buttermilk
- 2 tablespoons course decorating sugar , optional
- 1 cup chilled whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup sugar
Heat oven to 375 degrees.
Slice strawberries and add to small mixing bowl. Add sugar, balsamic vinegar and pepper. Gently stir strawberry mixture until ingredients are thoroughly incorporated. Set aside for at least 30 minutes so strawberries macerate.
Sift flour, sugar, baking powder and salt into the bowl of a food processor. Add chilled, cubed butter. Pulse on and off until mixture looks a bit like rice. If you do not have a food processor, use your hands to “cut” the butter into the flour mixture by pinching the butter and flour in your fingers.
When the flour mixture looks like rice, transfer to a mixing bowl. Add buttermilk to the flour mixture and stir until dough is just mixed. There may be lose bits of flour on the bottom of the bowl. Using your hands, form a ball of dough. You can squish the lose bits into the ball of dough. Transfer the dough ball to a lightly floured work surface.
Cut the dough ball into four pieces. These look like big triangles. Cut the four triangles in half. You should now have eight pieces. Please refer to the pictures above to see how the dough pieces should look. Once you have eight even pieces of dough, for each piece into a 3-inch circle that is about ½ inch thick. Place these circles of dough onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
If you have course decorating sugar, sprinkle sugar on top of each round of dough.
Place baking sheet with buttermilk dough circles into the oven and bake for 20 minutes.
While the dough is baking and strawberries are macerating, whip up the vanilla whipping cream by adding chilled whipping cream, vanilla extract and sugar to a mixing bowl. Mix on high speed for about two minutes until the mixture can form peaks when you lift the mixing blades.
When the biscuits are done let cool for 5 minutes or so until they are lukewarm. Top each lukewarm biscuit with the strawberry/balsamic mixture and vanilla whipped cream. Serve!!
If the biscuits become too cold, they can be rewarmed in a 350-degree oven for about 5 minutes.
When I served these, I left everything deconstructed and let my guests make their own Super-Duper Strawberry Shortcakes with Balsamic. I had the vanilla whipped cream, the strawberry mixture and biscuits all in separate bowls. The guests enjoyed making their own desserts.