Monday, June 27, 2011

Blueberry Shortcake

Since it is already blueberry season, at least down here, I made blueberry shortcake for the church potluck. Blueberry shortcake is pretty easy. I thought I had shortening, and did a search of the cupboards, unearthing artichoke hearts, instant noodle bowls, canned plums, and all manner of odd foods. But, no shortening. So, I used butter.
If you plan on making biscuits or shortcake or any of that stuff, you should have a pastry blender. A pastry blender is in the shape of a crescent, with a handle on top. It has multiple crescent shaped knives to allow the cook to cut in the butter or shortening. If you keep scraping the butter or shortening off the pastry blender and using the knives to work the dough back and forth, you will end up with a mixture that resembles oatmeal, or so says the cookbook. It's true. The flour sticks to little bits of shortening, or butter, and looks kind of like oatmeal.
This desert is reasonably quick and does not require much attention.

Blueberry Shortcake

2 cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup shortening or butter
2/3 cup milk
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt'
1/2 cup water
2 pints blueberries
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 cup heavy cream whipped

1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
2. To prepare shortcake, sift the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar into a bowl. Cut in the shortening until mixture resembles oatmeal.
3. With a fork, blend in the milk until mixture is just moistened. Knead lightly twenty seconds and turn onto a lightly floured board. Pat or roll into a large round one-half inch thick roll.
4, Place dough on a greased sheet and bake twenty minutes or until done. Split and spread with the butter.
5. While shortcake bakes, prepare sauce by mixing sugar, cornstarch and salt together in a small pan. Stir in the water and one pinto the the blueberries. Bring to a boil and simmer until clear and thickened, about four minutes. Remove from heat and add the lemon juice and lemon rind. Cool.
6. Spoon sauce and remaining pint blueberries between and one top of shortcake layers. Decorate with the whipped cream. Makes six servings.

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