Monday, July 4, 2011

Fourth of July Strawberry Shortcakes

All you need to make these strawberry shortcakes is your fave pound cake, good, fresh strawberries, a bit of sugar (vanilla sugar if you have it), and some whipping cream.  I used my favorite pound cake recipe and cut it in half to fit my mini bundt pan (my pan makes 6 single-serving-size minis).  The minis are SO fun to eat and make a great presentation, but to make this even easier, you could cut the pound cake recipe in half and just put it in a loaf pan- that way you could just use thick slices as the base of the strawberry shortcakes. 

We had a big Fourth of July barbecue lunch with grilled chicken legs, grilled, planked steak, grilled onions & potatoes, corn on the cob, and watermelon.  A few hours later, we enjoyed these little cakes.  The kids LOVED them and so did my husband and I.  I added some almond extract to the poundcake recipe, used vanilla sugar on the strawberries, and added the seeds from one vanilla bean to the homemade whipped cream. 
Fourth of July Strawberry Shortcakes

Pound cake of your choice (This is a good one- cut in half if desired)
Fresh, sliced strawberries
Sugar or vanilla sugar
Whipping cream
Vanilla bean, optional

1.  Prepare pound cake and set aside.  This can be done the day before.

2.  Wash and hull fresh strawberries.  Slice each one into 3 or 4 pieces and lay in a mixing bowl.  Sprinkle sugar or vanilla sugar over strawberries- 1 to 2 tablespoons, and let sit at room temp for about 30 minutes.  This will allow some of the juices to come out.  Stir.  If desired, you can mash some of them.

3.  Whip the cream in a large, metal or glass mixing bowl (I stored mine in the freezer for 30 minutes prior to whipping).  Add sugar, if desired- I only added one big spoonful of vanilla sugar.  If adding vanilla bean seeds, add them toward the end of mixing time and incorporate fully.

4.  Assemble the cakes- on a dessert plate, place some pound cake.  Top with sliced strawberries and whipped cream.
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