RECIPE: Strawberry and Passion Fruit Shortcake
FOR THE SHORTCAKE
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup plus 1 tbsp granulated sugar
2½ tbsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
½ cup cold unsalted butter, cut into small chunks
1 large egg
¼ cup double cream
¼ cup buttermilk
FOR THE STRAWBERRIES
4 cups ripe strawberries
2 tbsp granulated sugar
FOR THE PASSION FRUIT CREAM
1½ cups double cream
2 passion fruits
2 tbsp icing sugar
1 Put ¹⁄³ of the strawberries in a bowl and crush them into a chunky puree using a potato masher.
2 Slice the remaining berries about ½ cm thick and stir them into the crushed berries along with the sugar. Allow to stand at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.
3 Preheat your oven to 220C and position a rack in the centre of the oven.
4 Line a baking tray with baking parchment.
5 Sift the flour, ¹⁄³ cup sugar, baking powder and baking soda into a large bowl. Stir in the salt.
6 Using a fork or your fingertips, work the butter into the dry ingredients, until the mixture resembles coarse semolina.
7 In a small bowl, beat the egg and double cream with a fork. Mix in the buttermilk.
8 Make a well in the centre of the flour, and gradually pour in the cream, mixing with a fork until the dough is evenly moist and just comes together. It will not look smooth.
9 Gather the dough and gently knead it three or four times.
10 If the dough appears dry, add more cream, 1 tsp at a time.
11 Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and roll it into a 2cm thick disk.
12 With a sharp 6 ½ cm biscuit cutter, press straight down to cut the dough into rounds and lift straight up to remove (don’t twist the cutter or it will seal the sides of the biscuits and interfere with rising).
13 Transfer the rounds to the prepared baking sheet. Gather the dough scraps, gently knead them together, re-roll, and cut out more biscuits until you have a total of 6.
14 Lightly brush the biscuit tops with cream and sprinkle the remaining 1 tbsp of sugar on top.
15 Bake, rotating the baking sheet once, until the biscuit tops are lightly browned, about 10 to 15 minutes. Let the biscuits cool slightly while you whip the cream.
16 In a large, chilled metal bowl, whip the double cream, sugar and passion fruit to soft peaks with an electric hand mixer.
17 Using a serrated knife, split the warm biscuits in half horizontally and transfer the bottoms to 6 dessert plates.
18 Spoon about ¾ of the berries and their juice evenly over the biscuit bottoms. It’s OK if some of the berries spill out onto the plate.
19 Top with a generous dollop of the passion fruit whipped cream and cover each with a biscuit top.
20 Spoon more berries and cream over each shortcake and serve immediately.