I know Mother’s Day was last weekend, but celebrating holidays (and it doesn’t matter what holiday) is difficult when living hundreds and sometimes thousands of miles away from family. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. You struggle to make the right decision even though you know what needs to be done. This year, Mother’s Day morning was celebrated in New Jersey with my mom… while Mother’s Day evening was celebrated back home in Virginia with Mike and Talia.
What an exhausting yet perfect day!
My decision to travel to NJ was made weeks prior… my sister was traveling to Seattle to be with her daughters over the Mother’s Day weekend and I knew driving six hours to NJ to be with our mom was where I needed to be. At 94 years young she still lives on her own, which is remarkable, and although she is strong willed and still going… age is starting to get the best of her. But being with her and doing what I could to help… whether I was cooking, cleaning or doing something as simple as watching Jeopardy, her favorite television show made her Mother’s Day that much more special.
Although being with my mom was important, I was also looking forward to going home and spending the evening with Talia and Mike. I couldn’t wait to see what they had planned! The dinner was fabulous… Mike cooked salmon in a covered skillet on the stove. He served it with sautéed asparagus and Talia made one of my favorite recipes: curried couscous, which complemented the meal.
But the main event was the Strawberry Shortcake Talia whipped up! Everything was homemade, from the biscuits to the whipped topping. My mouth salivated.
Talia is not only a pinterest wiz and finds the best recipes, but she is also an excellent baker. I think her dream has always been to open her own bakery. Anyway, this recipe was one she found on a site called FREUTCAKE. With a few minor modifications, which Talia incorporated, this is what you’ll need to make what I call a most delicious light and not super sweet dessert.
- 5 – 6 cups strawberries, hulled and quartered
- 1 pint heavy whipping cream
- 2 tbsp. sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 rounded tsp. baking powder
- 4 tbsp. sugar
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold, unsalted butter, cubed
- 3/4 cup milk
- Heavy whipping cream for brushing
- For the shortcakes, preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Combing the flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt in a bowl
- Add the butter. Using a pastry blender or your fingers, cut the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles a coarse meal. Stir in the milk until soft dough forms.
- Turn the dough out on to a well-floured surface and with floured hands gently gather the dough into a round. Cut into six equal triangles shapes and then gently form into round biscuit-like cakes. Place on the cookie sheet.
- Brush the tops with cream and bake the shortcakes in the center of the oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on wire rack.
- Slice your strawberries and if you desire, sprinkle with sugar. Talia choose not to sweeten the strawberries, as they were sweet enough.
- In a cold mixing bowl, add the heavy whipping cream, 2 tbsp. sugar and 1 tsp. vanilla. Whip until soft peaks form.
- To serve, slice shortcakes in half. Place the bottom half onto a dessert plate, top with strawberries, add a dollop of whipping cream, cover with the top half of the shortcake, dollop with more whipping cream and top with a beautiful strawberry.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!
This was a wonderful dessert for Mother’s Day, but with strawberries in the peak of their season this is one dessert that will continue to be part of our dessert repertoire for the coming months.
Here’s some interesting facts about strawberries… did you know each strawberry is covered with 200 seeds, strawberries are high in vitamin C and A, and those luscious red berries help lower LDL cholesterol. Well now you just can’t beat that! Here’s to strawberries!