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Thursday, April 9, 2015

Recipe: Strawberry Cream Cheese Shortcake



Recipe: Strawberry Cream Cheese Shortcake



Two wrongs can make a right...

There are two "classic" desserts that I've never really enjoyed: Strawberry Shortcake and Strawberry Cheesecake. Shortcake can be dry and flavorless - without a heavy portion of whipped cream, it's often cough-inducing. And Cheesecake can be an overwhelming bomb of dense Cream Cheese - even I have my limits. 

So I thought, why not fix both problems with a little mash-up. And while truly fresh Strawberries may not be in season for a few more weeks, that's no reason not to be optimistic about the end of the seemingly interminable Winter produce drought.  

Viola! The Strawberry Cream Cheese Shortcake. Two layers of moist Strawberry Shortcake with a rich layer of Cheesecake filling nestled in between.

Strawberry Cream Cheese Shortcake




Strawberry Cream Cheese Shortcake:

Yield: 9 Servings (3"x3" Pieces in 9"x9" Pan)

Ingredients:
  • Butter: 60g (1/4 Cup or 1/2 Stick)
  • White Granulated Sugar: 125g (5/8 Cup)
  • Eggs: 50g (1 Large Egg)
  • Vanilla Extract: 9g (2 Tsp) 

  • All Purpose Flour: 250g (2 Cups)
  • Baking Powder: 14g (3 Tsp) 
  • Salt: 6g (1 Tsp)

  • Whole Milk: 180g (3/4 Cup)


  • Cream Cheese: 225g (7/8 Cup)
  • White Granulated Sugar: 25g (1/8 Cup)
  • Eggs 50g (1 Large Egg)


  • Strawberries: 1 Quart
  • Heavy Cream: 475g (1 Pint)


Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly coat a 9"x9" pan with non-stick spray. Dice  the Strawberries and set aside.

2. Prepare the Shortcake Batter. Using an electric mixer with a paddle attachment, cream the Butter and the 125g Sugar until light in color and airy. Add the Egg and continue beating until the batter is completely homogeneous.

3. In a separate bowl, combine the Flour, Baking Powder and Salt. Gently whisk the dry ingredients until they are well combined.

4. In two incorporations and alternating with the Whole Milk, add the dry ingredients to the Butter and Sugar with the mixer on the lowest setting. Stop mixing as soon as the ingredients are combined. Set the batter aside.

Chef's Note: By alternating between adding the Whole Milk and the dry ingredients, the batter will mix smoothly, reducing lumps.

5. Prepare the Cream Cheese Batter: Using a clean mixer bowl, cream the Cream Cheese and the 25g Sugar until light in color and airy. Add the Egg and continue beating until the batter is completely homogeneous.

6. Portion half of the Shortcake Batter (approximately 350g) in the bottom of the pan. Evenly distribute half of the diced Strawberries on top of the Shortcake Batter. Pour the Cream Cheese Batter over the layer of Strawberries. Finish filling the pan by spreading the remaining Shortcake Batter as the final layer.

7. Bake the Cake for 35 to 40 minutes or until the cake is lightly brown on top and beginning to pull from the side of the pan.

Chef's Note: Given the consistency of the Cream Cheese, a cake tester will not pull clean even when the cake is fully baked.

8. Allow the Cake to cool. Just before serving, whip the Heavy Cream to firm peaks and gently fold in the remaining Strawberries. Serve the cake with a large scoop of the Strawberry Whipped Cream on top.

Strawberry Cream Cheese Shortcake



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