25 May 2009

Some of my Favorite Spring Things (Part 2 of 2)

If asparagus doesn't trip your trigger and make you ready to put away the winter sweaters and bring out the tank tops, strawberries must do the trick! We are very lucky in Ohio to have a long strawberry season, so this is just the first of many strawberry dishes. I always want to try new strawberry desserts, but for me, strawberries are oftentimes just an excuse to eat shortcake. I realize I have blogged about my love for sweet, ruby red strawberries in the past, so I won't beat a dead horse. So instead I will dedicate this post to one of the most singularly delicious shortcake recipes I have ever come across!

I found it while browsing Epicurious for a new recipe to make for a dinner to share with my parents. I served my parents pan fried walleye with roasted potatoes and a green bean and cucumber salad. The food was tasty and all, but the real winner from the dinner was the Strawberry Shortcake with Grand Marnier Strawberry Compote with Chantilly Cream.

The shortcakes were tender and just sweet enough with the most delightful hint of lemon and buttermilk. The strawberries were delicious with the infusion of orange that the liqueur contributed. It was also incredibly easy to throw this dessert together. I used a pastry cutter to mix the shortcakes together and had the dough chilling and strawberries mascerating before my parents arrived. After dinner all I had to do was whip the heavy cream (which took about 10 seconds because it is so thick and luscious! I love Snowville Creamery!!!) to make a sweet topping.

Shockingly enough, I made no substitutions to the following recipe found at Epicurious.

Strawberry Shortcake with Grand Marnier Strawberry Compote and Chantilly Cream

Chef-owner Michael Mina of Michael Mina restaurant in San Francisco created this recipe for Epicurious's Wine.Dine.Donate program. He recommends using local strawberries whenever possible.

Yield: Makes 8 servings

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups cake flour
1/2 cup sugar, plus more for sprinkling
2 tablespoons baking powder
Pinch (1/16 teaspoon) kosher salt
1/2 cup cold butter (1 stick), cut into chunks
1 cup well-shaken buttermilk
1/2 cup cream, plus more for brushing
Finely grated zest from one lemon

Grand Marnier Strawberry Compote
4 pints strawberries, stems removed and quartered
1/2 cup Grand Mariner
1/4 to 1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Pinch (1/16 teaspoon) kosher salt

Chantilly Cream
1 cup cold heavy cream
2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar

Make Biscuits:
In large bowl, sift together all-purpose and cake flours, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Use pastry cutter or fork to blend in butter until mixture resembles coarse meal.
In medium bowl, whisk together buttermilk and cream, then whisk in lemon zest. Add liquid mixture to dry mixture, stirring with fork just until dough forms.
Turn dough out onto floured work surface and knead gently just until dough holds together, about 10 turns. Place dough on plate, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400°F.
On floured work surface, pat out dough to 1/2-inch-thick round. Using 3-inch cutter, cut out biscuits. Transfer to ungreased baking sheet, brush lightly with cream, and sprinkle with sugar. Bake until golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes, then transfer to rack to cool.
Make Compote:
In large mixing bowl, combine strawberries, Grand Mariner, 1/4 cup sugar, lemon juice, and salt. Mix gently, taste, and add more sugar if needed. Let stand at room temperature until juices form, at least 30 minutes.
Make Chantilly Cream:
Chill medium mixing bowl and whisk in freezer for 10 minutes before beginning. In chilled bowl, whisk cream until it begins to foam and thicken. Add sugar and continue to whisk just until soft peaks form. Do not over-whip.
To Plate:
Cut biscuits in half horizontally and place each bottom half in wide bowl or on plate. Divide compote among bowls, spooning strawberries onto biscuit bottoms and pouring some juice into each bowl. Top each shortcake with Chantilly Cream and biscuit top.


HoneyB said...

Looks delicious! I love how strawberries bring in summer. So fresh, bright red and sweet!

Anonymous said...

Great job! They look so good - strawberries (or raspberries) are my favorite fruit.

Laura said...

Grrr... why haven't you made this for me yet?!? ;) Maybe next week?

Anonymous said...

WOW! I Absolutely LOVE these! So delicious! perfect time for summer when everythings nice and fresh from the farmers.