Strawberries are super delicious right now. So, I knew exactly what I had to make for this week's community dinner ... Strawberry Shortcakes! Since I used store-bought pound cake, (hangs head in shame) I decided to spruce these short cakes up a bit with strips of fresh basil from our herb garden. The basil paired oh-so-wonderfully with the strawberries and fresh whipped cream. In fact, I'd like to stuff my face with a big bowl of berries and cream right this instant.
Homemade whipped cream is one million bazillion times better than any can or tub of cream you can buy at the store, and is also free of gross unpronounceable chemicals. Plus, it is one of the easiest things to make on the universe, and for some strange reason I find it incredibly enjoyable. This whipped cream recipe comes from our good friend and master gardener, Justin. You will want to thank him later. This stuff is good. See that perfect bowl of cream right down there? See that small section of delicious whipped cream missing from the lower left corner? I couldn't help myself.
Strawberry Basil Shortcakes
1 giant carton of Strawberries
2 Tablespoons of white sugar
Zest of one lemon
A handful of basil leaves (about 10)
2 cups of heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
Pound cake, angel food cake, or sweet biscuits
1. Hull and slice strawberries. Don't worry, hulling is just a fancy word for chopping off the top and scooping out that tough little middle piece.
2. Toss strawberries in sugar and lemon zest
3. Cut, chop, tear or chiffonade your basil into little pieces and toss it in with the berries. Set the berries in the fridge while you whip up your cream so they can get all juicy and delicious.
4. Beat together heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, vanilla, and cream of tartar in a large bowl. The cream will come together quicker if you use a stainless steel bowl you've chilled in the freezer. Beat on medium till soft peaks form from the cream when you lift the beater.
5. Assemble berries and cream over your preferred vehicle for sugary carb goodness.