Strawberry Shortcake Trifle
Here in Florida at the end of January, the strawberry season is just about to begin in full force although the complete season runs from December to April. In a couple of weeks we can enjoy the Plant City Florida Strawberry Festival - Late February through early March every year. Considered one of the top festivals in the country but Florida berries are already in the stores.
There is an interesting resource here http://www.pickyourown.org/index.htm#states where you will find the locations of many pick your own farms, strawberry festivals, blueberry festivals, corn festivals as well as instructions for making jams, ice creams and so on.
This recipe is a non-traditional take on an old Southern classic. Instead of a baking powder biscuit, this offers a sponge cake, scented with orange. Layering the cake with whipped cream, strawberries and juices in a glass bowl and you have something between a trifle and a shortcake.
Bake this cake in an 8 x 13 or 9 x 13 inch pan, and it will be crisp around the edges and a little bit chewy like a cookie. You can adjust the sugar to use less and the resulting cake will be less crisp and chewy. The orange zest should be freshly grated and it does not overwhelm the strawberry flavor but complements it.
Orange Scented Cake
Preheat oven to 375 degree
Grease and flour an 8 by 13 inch baking pan
Eggs, room temperature
Milk room temperature
1 ½ cups
Orange zest grated
1 teaspoon Vanilla
All Purpose Flour
Combine eggs and milk
Add Orange zest and Vanilla
Add Baking powder and salt
Beat until light, fluffy and lemon colored
Gently fold the flour into the eggs
Gently fold the melted butter into the eggs
Pour or spoon the batter into the greased and floured pan
Bake until golden, test with a toothpick in center
Toothpick should come out clean when inserted in middle
This bakes quickly, may be done in 20 to 30 minutes
Tapioca Flour will Stabilize your Whipped Cream
This recipe calls for tapioca flour, this is to stabilize the cream and keep it from weeping if you intend to keep the whipped cream for a few days. If you will eat the cream quickly it is safe to forget the tapioca.
Use heavy cream, not whipping cream for the best results. Whipping creams have a lower butter fat content and will break down sooner than heavy cream, so whipping cream is a last resort
2 Cups Heavy Cream Ice Cold
1/3 Cup Granulated Sugar
1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
OPTIONAL 2 Tablespoons tapioca flour
You can buy tapioca flour online through Amazon or can make it with a spice grinder and a mortar and pestle. Grind pearl tapioca to a fine powder with the spice grinder first, then pulverize it in a mortar and pestle.
Chill the bowl and beater for best results
Combine the cream, sugar, vanilla and tapioca flour
Start stirring and sprinkle the tapioca flour in gradually as you stir
Turn the speed to high and whip to a stiff peak
I usually turn the machine off a little early and whip the last few strokes by hand. This avoids turning the cream into butter.
I use granulated sugar because I think it adds a little loft to the cream, otherwise use powdered sugar
Rinse the strawberries
Remove the stems
Slice into quarters or slices
Dust the berries with powdered sugar
Stir the berries to coat all with sugar
Cover with cling wrap
Allow 2 to 4 hours for the berries to macerate
This will pull some juice out of the berries, creating a strawberry sauce and sweetening the berries
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