Baking Chez Moi: Strawberry Shortcakes, with French Flair

Pretty...pretty tasty!

Pretty…pretty tasty!

Today’s bake-a-long recipe is Dorie Greenspan’s “Franco-American Strawberry Shortcakes”, from her Baking Chez Moi cookbook. I’m writing this after partaking in the (very tasty) fruits of my labour, so I’m sitting on my sofa, tapping away at my laptop, with a happy tummy and a satisfied smile on my face. If I was a cat, I’d be purring. Tl;dr: Strawberry shortcake = yum.

Strawberry shortcake is a quintessentially American dish, I think, although it seems to have had it’s roots in the England. Dorie takes the standard biscuit-cream-strawberries dish and gives it a bit of French flair by making the biscuits out of ladyfinger batter, and suggesting the addition of a dollop of roasted strawberries with the dish. I, in my infinite wisdom and eagerness to eat shortcake, did not make the roasted strawberries, but they sound delicious and I dare say would pump up the flavour very nicely.

I’d never made ladyfingers before, and I was surprised with how easy they are to make! Beat some egg whites, fold in the egg yolks, add some flour and corn starch, and bam! you’ve got ladyfinger batter. You can mix up the batter in the time it takes to preheat an oven to 400 degrees, and given how quickly that can happen with the latest ovens, that’s saying something.

I piped the circles of batter that Dorie talked about, as well as the traditional ladyfinger shapes, and then dotted the remaining parchment paper space with small dots. The batter baked up very quickly, with a nice light golden colour, although if I had to do it again, I’d probably pipe a second layer of batter on top of the first, as they turned out rather thin.

Not a ladyfinger dot to be seen.

Not a ladyfinger dot to be seen.

After cooling them, and removing them from the parchment paper with a flat offset spatula, I promptly ate all the little dots of ladyfingers. Dorie says they’re nice to eat later in the day – ha! I ate them all before I even finished removing my shortcakes from the parchment paper. (I remain unrepentant. Taste testing is important!)

To make the whipped cream, I chilled my mixer bowl and beater in the freezer, which made the cream and icing sugar mixture whip up verrry quickly. Super quickly. Like, turn-my-back-to-put-the-biscuits-on-a-plate-quickly. Which really works for me, because the quicker the recipe, the faster I can eat the results!

Put down the camera and eat me already! Sincerely, Strawberry Shortcakes.

Put down the camera and eat me already! Sincerely, Strawberry Shortcakes.

To serve, I put two ladyfinger rounds on a plate, piped the whipped cream on top, and spooned macerated strawberries over it all, then topped it off with another ladyfinger round.

The DH and I dug in!

Still life in garnish.

Still life in garnish.

I was going to take a photo after the first bite, but it was just too delicious. So delicious that after five minutes, all that was left was the empty plate. And the garnish. Which I then ate.

I also packed one away for my lunch tomorrow. Salad plus a strawberry shortcake. Now that’s my kind of balanced meal!

So yes, it was a good recipe! Quite easy to make, tasty to eat, and looks good too. I’ll make this one again, and you should too! And then invite me over to eat them with you, yes? Ah, mon ami, you are too kind!

Next Post: Strawberry Pannacotta (Apparently I have strawberries on the brain. And in the fridge.) 

30 thoughts on “Baking Chez Moi: Strawberry Shortcakes, with French Flair

  1. Amy

    Your shortcakes look delicious. I love the trick of freezing your bowl and beater first, I’ll have to try it next time.

    Reply
  2. Kim

    These were really good! I made the roasted strawberries…mixed reactions from my tasters. Sometimes just plain strawberries are perfect.

    Reply
    1. Margaret Post author

      EXACTLY! And if you consider that cream even has (some) protein, it’s a totally balanced lunch! And a tasty one, which is very important!

      Reply
  3. Katrina

    Best thing learned from this one–how easy ladyfingers are to make. I’m not even sure why people buy them. 😉 Love this book and things I’m gaining from it (well, not the weight).

    Reply
    1. Margaret Post author

      Ha! Exactly! I completely agree that one of the best things I learned was how easy to make ladyfingers! Never buying them again — yay, no preservatives! 🙂 And, yeah, a side effect of this group is weight gain. But all in a good cause! 🙂

      Reply
  4. summer

    Your Shortcakes look scrumptious. And someone wise said “An empty plate is a happy plate”. BTW, great tip on chilling the bowl and beaters, so thanks for that one

    Reply
  5. Diane Zwang

    So I did pipe out a double layer for my ladyfingers. I failed to read the directions and used all the batter on my disks. Make the roasted strawberries next time, you won’t be disappointed.

    Reply
    1. Margaret Post author

      Cool! Did the double-piped ladyfingers turn out the way you expected? And yes, I’ll definitely make the roasted strawberries next time!

      Reply
  6. jora

    Salad plus a strawberry shortcake is exactly my kind of meal! Unless it’s breakfast and then I just need the strawberry shortcake 🙂

    Reply
    1. Margaret Post author

      Exactly! Strawberry shortcake is healthy! It’s basically toast with jam, plus some calcium from the whipped cream, amirite? Definitely healthy. 😉

      Reply
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