Simple Mixed Berry Shortcake

Mixed berry shortcake
A flakey biscuit, topped with pillows of whipped cream and a dreamy berry compote.

Summer is all about produce and what says “Summer” more than a basket of fresh picked berries? I adore strawberry shortcake and recently made this dessert for my father. Next to Key Lime Pie, this is his favorite treat.

First, whip up some heavy cream with a dash of vanilla and a tiny bit of sugar. You do not want a super sweet cream- just a hint of sugar. Then cook up a mess of berries with lemon juice, a tad of water and a quarter cup of sugar.

Add butter to flour and a few other pantry staples to create a simple buttermilk biscuit for the base. The layers of yumminess will have your friends and family asking for seconds, so go ahead and plan to make a big batch of this summer time confection.

A quick dough makes for a tender extra flakey biscuit.

SImple Mixed Berry shortcake

  • For the cream:
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

  • 2 tsp sugar

  • 1 tsp vanilla

  • For the berries
  • 1 cup raspberries, washed

  • 2 cup blackberries, washed

  • 3 cups strawberries, washed, hulled & sliced, reserve 6 berries for garnish

  • 1/4 cup sugar

  • 2 TBSP lemon juice

  • 1 tsp lemon zest

  • 1/2 cup water

  • For the shortcake:
  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

  • 2 TBSP baking powder

  • 1 tsp kosher salt

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, COLD-cut into pieces, PLUS, 2 TBSP melted butter

  • 1 cup PLUS 1 TBSP buttermilk- cold

  • 1 tsp sugar

Mixed berry shortcake
How do you decide with so many berries in season ?

Method:

  • Pre heat oven to 425 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
  • In the bowl of a food processor, pulse together for a few seconds flour, baking powder, salt, sugar. Add in butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse sand. Turn mixture out into a large bowl. Make a well and slowly pour in buttermilk. With cold hands, mix the flour mixture and buttermilk until a dough comes together.
    Turn out on a lightly floured surface. Work the dough until it comes together to form a rough rectangle. Using a bench scraper, fold the dough into thirds, bringing down the top third into the middle and the bottom third into the center as well- like folding a piece of paper to put in an envelope. Wrap in plastic. Chill for 15 minutes.
  • While biscuit dough is chilling, combine all ingredients for berry mixture ( all berries through water) in a heavy sauce pan. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer and let the berries cook, covered for 15 minutes. If mixture becomes too thick, add more water and a bit more lemon juice. You can make this ahead of time and warm up just before assembling the shortcakes.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat cream on medium speed for 2 minutes, increase speed and add in vanilla and sugar. Beat on high until loose peaks begin to form- about another 2-3 minutes. Do not over mix. Keep chilled until time to assemble your shortcakes.
  • Remove the dough from the fridge. On a lightly floured surface, unwrap the biscuit dough. With a floured rolling pin, roll out the dough until it is about 3/4 inch thick. With a glass or a biscuit cutter, cut biscuits into 3″-4″ rounds. Place biscuits on prepared baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush tops of biscuits with melted butter. Bake biscuits for 15 minutes or until golden brown and layers are visible. Prior to baking- if the dough gets too warm after rolling out, chill the biscuits for a minute or two.
  • To assemble:
    Remove biscuits from oven. Once cool enough to handle, slice in half using a serated knife. Place each half on a serving plate. Dollop a generous spoonful of whipped cream onto the bottom half of the biscuit, top with a spoonful of berries. Top with other half of biscuit. Add another serving of whipped cream to the top. Garnish shortcakes with a few reserved strawberries or mint leaves. Serve immediately.

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