Desserts · Pastry

Chai Strawberry Shortcake

Happy summer solstice and crazy Bay Area heat wave! Here, have some whipped cream. # 263: Chai Strawberry Shortcake

How have I not done a strawberry shortcake post yet? My mind is blown. There have been a handful of strawberry shortcake inspired noms:

But where’s the classic, melt-in-your-mouth shortcake buried under a mountain of sugared berries and clouds of chantilly cream?

Boom. Here we go. Plus a lil spice twist, because why not? I swapped out the lemon zest for orange zest and added chai tea that had been blitzed to a finer texture.

I think 2017 me would have thought this was too simple to post about. Luckily, 2022 me gets to post whatever strikes her fancy and fits the ingredients she has on hand! I’ve shifted from simply trying to learn new baking skills, to working towards a level of comfort where I can riff on recipes without ruining them.

Also finding a balance between creativity and laziness: what yummy dessert can I make with whatever fruit and dairy I have on hand?

Sparkly sugar-coated orange zest.

Shortcakes are close relatives of scones and biscuits. Almost twins with scones, but more like first cousins with biscuits. The main family trait is minimal gluten, leaving a tender, crumbly texture.

If you’re going to use a food processor or a stand mixer, pull the dough out when it’s still coming together and gently knead by hand to bring it into a cohesive ball.

In my experience, shortcakes are a tiny bit sweeter than scones (sometimes with coarse sugar sprinkled on top for sparkle and crunch.) I had some cream cheese I wanted to use up, so I tracked down a scone recipe that called for it. It has less fat and less water than heavy cream, but you can make up for it by adding in milk and butter.

I turned my back for one second… all hail the queen of the baking marble!

Look how cute! While these are yum, I think I’ll go back to my heavy cream shortcake recipe next time.

Shortcake roll call: Sliced strawberries with a sprinkle of sugar? Present. Whipped cream with vanilla and powdered sugar? Yes ma’am.

Happy munching!

Recipe proportions from:

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