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Use leftover hard-boiled eggs in a strawberry dessert

Recipe: The Easter bunny's favorite shortcake

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Is there any dessert that says spring better than strawberry shortcake? (Photos:
Kathy Morrison)


If you have extra hard-boiled eggs after today's festivities, you can make use of a few of them -- the yolks, anyway -- in the quintessential spring dessert: strawberry shortcake.

As puzzling as that may sound, it has an easy explanation: Two hard-boiled egg yolks go in with the other ingredients of the shortcake biscuit.

I'd read that bits of hard-boiled egg yolk in baked goods make for a more-tender result, and thought Easter would be the perfect time to try this. I found the perfect recipe for the biscuits on the
bonappetit.com site -- it makes a lovely base for some gorgeous strawberries. Mix and handle the dough with a light touch so you don't defeat the goal of tender shortcakes.

The unused cooked whites, by the way, when chopped or sliced make a great addition to salads, especially spinach salad.

A note about strawberries: Buy berries that smell like strawberries for shortcake! If they're good fresh ones, with a heady strawberry fragrance, I hate to gunk them up with too much sugar, cornstarch, etc. So my strawberry topping here is very light. The more involved (cooked) bonappetit.com topping can be found here .

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Hard-boiled eggs play well with strawberries in shortcake.

Strawberry shortcake
Adapted from bonappetit.com
Serves 6

Shortcake ingredients:

2 hard-boiled eggs, cooled and peeled, whites removed for other use
1 1/3 cups all purpose flour
3 tablespoons fine cornmeal
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
6 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream, divided
Coarse sugar, for sprinkling

Kathy's strawberry topping :

3 baskets ripe strawberries, washed and hulled
3 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
2 to 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons fruity liqueur, such as Kirschwasser or Framboise, optional

For serving:
Sweetened whipped cream or the topping of your choice

Shortcake instructions:

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Scoop biscuit dough, don't roll it out -- that keeps it tender.

In a food processor, pulse the cooked egg yolks, flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt and sugar, just to combine. Add the butter and pulse just enough to break the butter down to pea-size pieces. Slowly add the 2/3 cup cream, pulse 2 or 3 times to just incorporate it. (Alternatively, mix the dough in a bowl with a pastry blend or by criss-crossing two knives.)

Dump the dough out onto a floured pastry cloth or other floured work surface, and gently fold it onto itself just enough to get rid of any dry bits.

Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a 1/4 measuring cup or large ice cream scoop, scoop up 6 balls of dough and place them on the parchment paper. Do not flatten the mounds. Cover the pan with wax paper or plastic wrap and chill it about 20 minutes but no more than 30, until the dough is cold.

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Baked and ready for serving after they cool a little bit.

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Brush the tops of the dough mounds with the remaining cream and sprinkle on the coarse sugar. Bake 25-30 minutes until golden and sides are firm to the touch. Let cool. (If making ahead, up to 24 hours before serving, store the biscuits at room temperature and reheat gently before assembling shortcakes.)

Strawberry topping instructions :

Thickly slice about 1/3 of the strawberries and place in a non-reactive bowl. Stir in the lemon juice and 2 tablespoons sugar (a little more if the berries aren't super-sweet), and let the berries macerate at room temperature for about 20 minutes.

If using the liqueur, stir it into the macerated berries. Then cut the remaining berries into quarters or slices and stir them into the macerated berries.

To assemble:

Split the biscuits and place the bottom halves on dessert plates or in bowls. Spoon some of the berries over each biscuit, then add some whipped cream and cover with the biscuit top. Serve immediately.





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Garden Checklist for week of July 7

Take care of garden chores early in the morning, concentrating on watering. We’re still in survival mode until this heat wave breaks.

* Keep your vegetable garden watered, mulched and weeded. Water before 8 a.m. to conserve moisture.

* Prevent sunburn; provide temporary shade for tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, melons, squash and other crops with “sensitive” skin.

* Hold off on feeding plants until temperatures cool back down to “normal” range. That means daytime highs in the low to mid 90s.

* Don’t let tomatoes wilt or dry out completely. Give tomatoes a deep watering two to three times a week. Harvest vegetables promptly to encourage plants to produce more.

* Squash especially tends to grow rapidly in hot weather. Keep an eye on zucchini.

* Some weeds thrive in hot weather. Whack them before they go to seed.

* Pinch back chrysanthemums for bushy plants and more flowers in September.

* Harvest tomatoes, squash, peppers and eggplant. Prompt picking will help keep plants producing.

* Remove spent flowers from roses, daylilies and other bloomers as they finish flowering.

* Pinch off blooms from basil so the plant will grow more leaves.

* Cut back lavender after flowering to promote a second bloom.

* One good thing about hot days: Most lawns stop growing when temperatures top 95 degrees. Keep mower blades set on high.

* Once the weather cools down a little, it’s not too late to add a splash of color. Plant petunias, snapdragons, zinnias and marigolds.

* After the heat wave, plant corn, pumpkins, radishes, winter squash and sunflowers. Make sure the seeds stay hydrated.

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