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Sunday, August 29, 2010

Brown Sugar Shortcake with Fruit and Goat’s Milk “Crème Fraîche”

Here's a recipe I just finished adapting: tender brown sugar shortcakes and tangy goat cheese crème fraîche make a nice foil for summer berries, or sliced fresh peaches—thanks to Alison's Connecticut orchard peach torte for the inspiration!  Maybe this recipe will work with grilled pineapple and blackberries (with lime-flavored crème) for the dinner Colin and I are planning?

Brown Sugar Shortcake with Fruit and Goat’s Milk “Crème Fraîche”
Anne Milton
August, 2010

For Shortcakes:
2 cups flour
1/2 cup loosely-packed brown sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
Generous 1/4 teaspoon salt
6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1/4” dice and chilled in freezer
1 1/2 cups heavy cream, well chilled
1 Tablespoon light brown or raw cane sugar (for sprinkling)

For Topping:

4 oz plain mild goat cheese (the creamier the better)
2-4 oz goat milk yogurt or kefir
Blue agave nectar or honey to taste

1 quart any kind of berries or bite-size pieces of fresh fruit

To make the shortcakes:

Preheat oven to 375˚

1.              Line a baking sheet with cooking parchment.

2.              Sift together flour, brown sugar, baking powder and salt, rubbing any lumps of brown sugar through sifter by hand if necessary.

3.              Place dry ingredients in food processor bowl and process for 20 seconds or so to blend completely.  Add frozen butter all at once.  Run processor in bursts of about 10 seconds at a time until butter is finely cut up and uniformly distributed.  Put mixture in a bowl.

4.              Add 1 cup chilled cream and stir gently with fork until evenly distributed.  Pinch a tiny piece, and if it doesn’t hold together, add a little more cream.  Stir just until dough is moistened and starting to clump together.  Do not over-mix!

5.              Turn dough out onto a large piece of plastic wrap.  Without working the dough too much, pull sides of plastic wrap up around it and gently gather dough into a ball, then pat it into a rectangle roughly 8x6” and 3/4” high.  Using a sharp knife dipped in flour, cut dough in 8 or 10 rectangles.

6.              Set the biscuits on the baking sheet.  Brush lightly with a little of the remaining cream, then sprinkle with light brown sugar.  Bake immediately for 18 minutes, or until tops are golden brown and the insides are set.  Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

To make the topping:

1.              Crumble goat cheese into a bowl.  Stir in yogurt or kefir, adding enough to make mixture the consistency of sour cream, and mix until all lumps are gone.  Sweeten to taste with agave nectar or honey.

2.              Chill thoroughly

To assemble:

When ready to serve, split shortcake biscuits horizontally and place bottom half on each plate.  Arrange fruit with some of its juices on top of and around shortcakes, then top with generous spoonfuls of the goat cheese mixture.  Place second shortcake half attractively on top, and sprinkle with remaining light brown sugar.

Makes 8-10 servings

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1 comment:

  1. Yum. This looks really tasty. I had the pleasure
    of sampling Alison's peach torte and it was


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