Sunday, July 21, 2013

Inspired by Sherri's Strawberry Shortcake!




You may remember, our friend, Sherri, has a particular fondness for strawberry shortcake.  You may also remember the strawberry shortcake she had at Mt. Vernon Restaurant in Chattanooga had a surprising twist...raspberry sauce.  That cake was the inspiration for a little experimentation the other day.  It started because my nieces wanted to come up for a cooking class, which is something they enjoy doing every now and then.  They chose the menu and I had all the ingredients ready for them.  The menu they picked included salsa and guacamole with tortilla chips, smoked beer butt chicken, grilled potatoes, strawberry spinach salad with homemade raspberry vinaigrette, Sprite biscuits, and strawberry shortcake.  We had four students and each one cleaned and prepared their own chicken and then they collaborated on the other recipes.  They did a great job and the dinner was declared a success by the whole family.  Everybody got an A+!
The four students










Chicken Jacuzzi


                                                          Preparing the Chickens

Collecting herbs for the chickens


                                                       


Rob demonstrates proper knife technique.

Chickens in the Traegar tanning bed!

Working on Salsa and Guacamole


Guacamole

Salsa



Making the Strawberry Shortcake

Since they chose strawberry short cake, I thought it would be a perfect time to see if we could duplicate or at least make a version of the strawberry shortcake at Mt. Vernon, so we also whipped up a raspberry sauce to go with it.  It was delish!  I thought you all might like the recipes.  The cake is a recipe I have been using for years.  It came out of an old Paula Deen magazine and it is wonderful.  It is actually a coconut pound cake, but it has coconut flavoring instead of actual coconut.  The cake at Mt. Vernon was not a coconut flavored cake, but since this is my favorite pound cake, I decided to use it anyway.  Try it...you'll like it!
Caught sampling the batter!

Coconut Pound Cake

1 c. butter, softened
1/2 c. shortening
3 c. sugar
5 eggs
3 c. all purpose flour
1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
1 c. milk
1 t. coconut extract
1 t. rum extract

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Spray the inside of the Bundt pan completely with Baker's Joy.  Cream butter and shortening until light and fluffy.  Gradually add sugar. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine and sift flour, salt and baking powder.  Add flour mixture to butter mixture a little at a time, alternating with milk.  Begin and end with flour.  Add coconut and rum extracts.  Pour into Bundt pan and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes.  Cool for 10 minutes and then turn out onto a cooling rack.  Glaze while still slightly warm.  Do not prepare glaze ahead of time.  Wait until the cake is done before cooking glaze.

Glaze
Yum!

1 c. sugar
1/4 c. water
1/2 t. almond extract

Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan.  Stir well and heat until mixture begins to boil.  Boil for one minute and immediately pour over warm cake.




While your cake is cooking, you can whip up this yummy raspberry sauce and also get your strawberries ready.

Raspberry Sauce

1 small container of raspberries
Juice of 1 orange
1 c. sugar
4 T. Raspberry liqueur

Combine all ingredients in small saucepan and cook over medium heat until sauce thickens.

Strawberries

Wash, slice and stem strawberries.  Add 1/4 c. sugar and 1 T. raspberry liqueur. Let the strawberries macerate while the cake is baking.

Just before serving, whip up a little amaretto cream to plop on the top of the cake

Taking the stems off the strawberries
Amaretto Cream

1 c. heavy cream
1/4 c. sugar
1 T. amaretto

Beat heavy cream in mixer until it begins to thicken.  Add sugar and amaretto and continue beating until the cream is thick and forms peaks.

When you are ready to serve, top each slice with some strawberries, drizzle with a bit of raspberry sauce and put a spoonful of amaretto cream on the top.

It is not the same as Mt. Vernon's...but it might be better!

Go ahead, try it!  It sounds more complicated than it actually is.  These kids made it...you know you can, too!
And if you do, let us know what you think. Now to try to duplicate that amaretto pie Luanne and I had at Mt. Vernon...hmmmmm!

Ayla is proud of the cake



Richi Reynolds
Richi Reynolds

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