Blueberry Cassis Shortcakes

Menu Part: 
Dessert
Cuisine Type: 
American
Serves: 
8

Karen Barker

Pizzeria Mercato

Carrboro, N.C.

Southern cooks pride themselves on their light, flaky, biscuits—eaten as is with a smudge of butter and honey or topped with sweet or savory ingredients. The buttermilk biscuit version here serves as the base for a berry shortcake—a favorite Southern sweet that is elevated with a touch of cassis to star on the dessert menu.

Ingredients

5 cups blueberries, divided
1/2 cup sugar, divided
2 1/2 tsp. lemon juice
2 1/2 tbsp. crème de cassis
1 1/2 tsp. cornstarch
2 cups flour
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
4 oz. butter, chilled and cut into pieces
1 egg
1/4 cup buttermilk
1 3/4 cup cream, divided
Powdered sugar, as needed

Steps

  1. In a non-reactive saucepan, combine 3 cups blueberries, 2 tbsp. sugar, lemon juice and crème de cassis. Cook over med. heat, stirring occasionally, until the berries pop and release their juices.
  2. In small bowl, combine cornstarch and 1 tbsp. cold water; stir into simmering blueberry mixture. Simmer 1 min.; remove from heat. Add remaining blueberries; cool over ice bath. Refrigerate until ready to use, up to 2 days.
  3. Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  4. In food processor, combine flour, 1/3 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Pulse in chilled butter until mixture resembles coarse meal; remove to mixing bowl.
  5. In small bowl, combine egg, buttermilk and 1/4 cup cream; stir into flour mixture to form a moist dough, adding more cream if necessary.
  6. Turn dough onto lightly floured surface and gently knead several times. Roll out dough to 3/4-in. thickness; cut into 8 to 10 rounds, each 2 1/2 in. diameter. Place rounds on prepared baking sheet; brush tops with cream and sprinkle with sugar.
  7. Bake shortcakes about 15 min. or until lightly golden brown.
  8. Meanwhile, in chilled bowl with a chilled whip, beat 1 1/2 cups cream until lightly thickened. Add 1 1/2 tbsp. sugar; beat to med. soft peaks. Chill until ready to sue.
  9. At service, with serrated knife, split warm shortcakes. Set bottoms on individual plates; divided blueberry compote among the shortcakes, allowing some to run off each onto plate. Top with a generous dollop of whipped cream and cap with top half of shortcake. Sprinkle powdered sugar on plate and top of shortcake.

Photo courtesy of U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council

Source: pastry chef Karen Barker and the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council

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