Shortcakes

Via Dorie Greenspan: Baking from my Home to Yours


580 g (4 cups) all-purpose flour
30 ml (2 tablespoons) baking powder
4 ml (3/4 teaspoon) salt
100 g (6 tablespoons) sugar
180 g (3/4 cup - 12 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces 

300 ml (1 1/2 cups) cold heavy cream
berries about 100 g (1/2 cup) per shortcake
lightly sweetened softly whipped cream


Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).
Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat.
Whisk the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar together in a large bowl.
Drop in the butter and, using your fingers, toss to coat the pieces of butter with flour.
Quickly, working with a pastry blender, cut and rub the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture is pebbly.
You'll have pea-size pieces, pieces the size of oatmeal flakes and pieces in between - and that's just right.
Pour the cream over the dry ingredients and toss and gently turn the ingredients with a fork until you've got a very soft dough.
When the dough comes together, you'll probably still have dry ingredients at the bottom of the bowl - just use a spatula or your hands to mix and knead the dough until it's evenly blended.
Even with all the flour mixed in, the dough will be soft and sticky.
Spoon out about 1/3 cup of dough for each shortcake onto the baking sheet, leaving about 3 inches of space between the mounts of dough.
Pat each mound down until is is between 3/4 and 1 inch high.
If you have more dough, repeat, cooling the baking sheet first.
Bake for 15 - 18 minutes, rotating the sheet from front to back at the midway point, until the shortcakes are puffed and give just a bit when prodded.
Pull the sheet from the oven and transfer the shortcakes to a cooling rack.
The cakes are tender and really pretty fragile.
Put the bottom halves on plates, top with the berries and spoon over some whipped cream.
Put the tops on the shortcakes or lean them against the cream.

Bon Appétit!