It’s an unfortunate reality…
That we still require sustenance in the summertime.
Because, I, for one, would be just fine with closing the kitchen during the months of June, July, and August, and spending every waking minute outside.
As much as this girl loves cooking and making nourishing from-scratch food, there’s something about summer that makes me lose all of my kitchen motivation.
So we eat sandwiches, salads, and scrambled eggs. Or sometimes just popcorn. Because dang it… I wanna be outside! Our Wyoming summers are so short, I’m bound and determined soak up every second I can.
But even though my kitchen creativity runs thin during these summer months, there are a few things that’ll always shake me out of my summer slump, and anything made with fresh, in-season fruit fits the bill for sure.
When you’re blessed with those perfectly sweet berries this time of year, you have some options, to be sure:
There’s homemade frozen yogurt colored pink with fresh strawberries, this no-cook raw strawberry freezer jam that’s easy to toss together, or make blueberry cheesecake ice cream and swap out the blueberries for whatever you have in the fridge.
And then there’s classic homemade strawberry shortcake, of course. When I think of wholesome, old-fashioned desserts, this one is at the top of the list. Not to mention, it’s pretty darn easy to throw together, and is only lightly sweetened to allow the beauty of the fresh fruit to shine through. Now, when it comes to shortcake, you can go fancy with perfectly cut biscuits or layered cakes, OR you can take the lazy road and turn that shortcake dough into rustic biscuits. Wanna guess which method I chose? Lazy summer cooks, rejoice!
Homemade Strawberry Shortcake Recipe
For the Shortcakes:
Yield: 12 ‘rustic’ biscuits
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder (I use this aluminum-free brand)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt (I use this one)
- 2 tablespoons unrefined cane sugar (or coconut sugar or regular granulated sugar)
- 1/4 cup cold butter
- 1 cup cream OR half n’ half OR milk
Combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar in a bowl. Cut in the butter, being careful not to over mix (aka leave some butter bits in there). Add the cream in all at once, mix until combined, then drop the biscuits onto a stoneware sheet. Bake at 400 for 16-18 minutes, or until golden brown. Allow to cool.
For the Strawberries:
- 3-4 cups sliced strawberries
- 2-3 tablespoons unrefined cane sugar (or coconut sugar or regular granulated sugar)
In a small bowl, combine the strawberries and sugar. Mash the berries a bit to release the juices, and allow to sit at least 15 minutes before assembling shortcakes.
For the Whipped Cream:
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1-2 tablespoons real maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla (how to make real vanilla extract at home)
In a stand mixer or with an immersion blender, whip the cream, syrup, and vanilla until stiff peaks have formed.
To Assemble the Shortcakes:
Cut the biscuits in half, then top the bottom half with a hearty spoonful of strawberries, top with whipped cream and place the other half the biscuit on top. Top with another dollop of whipped cream and garnish with a strawberry slice.
Alternatively, you can make mini-shortcake parfaits. Simply layer the ingredients in mason jars and serve that way for an extra rustic touch.
Homemade Strawberry Shortcake Notes:
- I have not tried this recipe with any gluten-free flours. Although if you wanted to substitute in a variety of whole wheat flours for the all-purpose, that would work just fine.
- You can easily make the biscuits ahead of time, although you’ll want to serve immediately after you do the final assembly– otherwise the biscuits will get soggy and the whipped cream will fall.
- Can you use other berries or fruit instead of strawberries? Heck yes!
- The beauty of this recipe is that it’s oh-so-flexible. If you like your desserts more or less sweet, simple taste as you go and adjust the sweetener accordingly.
- The biscuits are more decadent when made with cream, but if all you have is milk, that’s perfectly fine. Don’t sweat it.