September 8, 2010

Raspberry and Peach Shortcakes

Summer is ending, and fall is just around the corner...well at least for most of you. Not for us. Nope, we are still hitting the triple digits (and let me tell you I have never wanted it to be cold more) and fall seems unreachable right now. But, (there is some good to summer) summer desserts never tasted better. Don't get me wrong, in a few weeks (no matter how hot it still is) you will start to see my fall ingredients coming out, but I decided to embrace summer one last time with this shortcake recipe.

I have adapted this recipe from a Martha Stewart magazine from years ago. It was delicious, but my only complaint here was the shortcake itself. They were delicious, but mine were not as big and flaky as I would have liked. It could have completely been an ingredient mistake on my part, so if anyone makes this and it turns out fine let me know! Despite having thin biscuits, these did not fall short of anything.

Raspberry and Peach Shortcakes
You can honestly serve any fruit in place of the peaches and raspberries, but raspberries and peaches sounded quite divine to me, and that it was...
Adapted from Martha Stewart Magazine 
Makes about 9 (2 1/2 inch) , or 24 (1 1/2 inch) shortcakes 

2 pints fresh raspberries
2-3 fresh peaches, cut in 1/2, cut into as thick or thin pieces as you want
1/3 cup dark brown sugar (you can substitute regular, but the flavor will not be as deep)
4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 
zest of 1/2 lemon
4 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
2 cups plus 4 tablespoons heavy cream (I used 1/2 & 1/2)
1 large egg yolk
2 tablespoons turbinado sugar for sprinkling 
Cinnamon Vanilla Whipped Cream (recipe follows)

In food processor, add flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, cinnamon and lemon zest. Pulse until incorporated. Add in butter, and pulse until it resembles a course meal. Add 2 cups and 2 tablespoons of the heavy cream (or 1/2 & 1/2) and pulse until dough just comes together. Transfer to a lightly floured work surface; Pat into a 1 inch thick square . Use a 2 1/2 inch, or 1 1/2 inch cookie (or biscuit) cutter, cut out biscuits and transfer them to a parchment lined baking sheet. Refrigerate 20 minutes or overnight. 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Remove biscuits from refrigerator. Whisk together remaining 2 tablespoons cream, and egg yolk. Brush the tops with egg wash, and sprinkle with sugar. Bake until golden brown, 12-15 minutes. Cool slightly on wire racks. When ready to serve, cut in 1/2 and put a big spoon of whipped cream and berries. 

Vanilla Whipped Cream
This is a basic whipped cream recipe. If you are not partial to cinnamon you can omit it, but it plays really well with the peaches! I use this recipe for pretty much everything that could use whipped cream..
Makes about 3 1/2 cups

2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3-4 tablespoons powdered sugar (depending on how sweet you like it)
A couple of pinches of cinnamon to taste

Chill a mixing bowl in freezer for a few minutes (optional). Whip heavy cream until soft peaks form. Add in cinnamon, vanilla and sugar. Beat until stiff peaks form. 

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