Weeknight Dessert

Sometimes the week just gets out of control and it becomes quickly clear that you are no longer winning the battle. And that’s ok. That’s when you throw together a little getaway in a bowl, a little something that makes your weeknight a little easier.

In walks Strawberries and Whipped Cream…

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Just take a minute to appreciate the simplicity. You need 2 ingredients (ok maybe 4), but given that it’s summer, you might already have one of those in your fridge. I threw this together a couple of weeks ago on a work night when both B and I needed a little pick-me-up after dinner.

Go forth. Enjoy. Gussy it up for friends, because this would be excellent with some mint or basil, (or don’t and eat it all yourself — I’ve definitely done that)

Ingredients
Strawberries, cut into quarters
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla

Whip the cream, sugar, and vanilla together until just stiff peaks form (or use any other whipped topping that you would prefer). Place some strawberries in the bottom of your serving vessel. Cover with whipped cream. Add more strawberries. Eat all of it and feel better about your week.

Weekend Recap

This weekend was great. Not too much scheduled, a little R&R and some errands made for a very calm weekend.

I didn’t end up doing any baking over the weekend, but I just had to share what I made for Father’s Day weekend back in June. I needed a dessert that would travel well and could work for Father’s Day brunch with one side of the family and dinner with the other side.

I ended up making strawberry shortcake adapted from a Bon Appetit recipe. I used farmer’s market strawberries which were just bursting with juice. I also made the biscuits smaller than the original recipe called for and served in a buffet style so that everyone could decide how many they wanted (and could load up on whipped cream). They were delicious!!

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Strawberry Shortcake adapted from Bon Appetit

INGREDIENTS
SHORTCAKES
¼ cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for surface
6 tablespoons (¾ stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 cup heavy cream
1 large egg, beaten to blend
BERRIES AND ASSEMBLY
2 pounds fresh strawberries, hulled, quartered (about 4 cups), divided
4 tablespoons sugar, divided
5 sprigs basil
2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

SHORTCAKES
Preheat oven to 400°. Whisk sugar, baking powder, salt, and 2 cups flour in a large bowl. Using your fingers or a pastry cutter, work in butter until the texture of coarse meal with a few pea-size pieces of butter remaining. Add cream and mix until dough just comes together (it will be sticky).

Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and pat into a 12×4” rectangle about ¾” thick. Cut out rounds with a 1” biscuit cutter (or other size if you prefer), re-rolling scraps as needed to make rounds. Whisk egg with 1 Tbsp. water in a small bowl. Transfer rounds to a parchment-lined baking sheet and brush tops with egg wash (I forgot to do this! WHOOPS). Bake until tops are golden brown and shortcakes are cooked through, 10-15 minutes (or longer depending on size of biscuits.
DO AHEAD: Shortcakes can be made 2 days ahead. Store tightly wrapped at room temperature.

BERRIES AND ASSEMBLY
Coarsely chop 3 cups strawberries (use any bruised or less perfect ones) and cook with 4 Tbsp. sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until berries are softened and mixture is slightly thickened, about 5-7 minutes. Let berry compote cool.

Meanwhile, muddle basil and 1 Tbsp. sugar together, then toss with remaining 1 cup strawberries in a medium bowl and let sit until fruit begins to release juices, 15–20 minutes. Discard basil.
Using an electric mixer, beat cream, vanilla extract and remaining 1 Tbsp. sugar to soft to medium peaks, about 4 minutes.

To serve, top shortcakes with berry compote, whipped cream mixture, and macerated strawberries.