Every June pints of strawberries would arrive at the farm stand and every year my mother would bake her version of a Strawberry Shortcake. Nowadays, strawberries are found almost year-round but back then strawberries were long-awaited until early summer, and it was a very brief season. This sponge cake recipe makes a light and delicate cake, comes together quickly and is a nice way to show off that bright red triangular fruit with the mini seeds. A two layer strawberry shortcake is the perfect dessert for a dinner party as this cake is always a hit and best when fresh. With just the two of us I make this cake as a single layer.

[This recipe is from the 1950 Betty Crocker PictureCookbook]

Sponge Cake [Recipe was halved for this single layer cake] 
2 Eggs
1 cup Sugar
1/4 tsp Salt
1 tsp Vanilla
1 tbsp Butter, melted
1/2 cup Milk
1 cup Softasilk Cake Flour (or 1 cup Flour), sifted
1 tsp Baking Powder

In a separate bowl mix Cake Flour and Baking Powder. Set aside.
Blend Eggs until light and fluffy. Add Sugar, Salt and Vanilla.
Melt Butter in cup of boiling Milk. Add to mixture.
Add flour mixture and mix until incorporated. Batter will be thin and watery.
Bake at 350 for 25-35 minutes until cake tester comes out clean.

Whipped Cream
1 cup Heavy Cream or Whipping Cream (half pint)
3 tbsp Sugar

Chill metal bowl (preferred) and beaters in refrigerator at least 1-2 hours ahead. 
Blend Cream and Sugar on high speed until whipped cream forms and holds its shape. Do not underbeat or overbeat.
Rinse and hull Strawberries immediately before using. Let dry completely on paper towel. Slice in half.
Spread Whipped Cream onto cake. Top with strawberries. Lightly sprinkle strawberries with sugar. Refrigerate cake. 
For two layer cake spread whipped cream on first layer, top with thinly-sliced strawberries.
Add second layer, top with whipped cream and strawberries as above.

Hint: To make strawberries last, trim off the lid of the original container and store in the refrigerator. Do not clean the strawberries until you are ready to use. Rinse the strawberries in a colander, then cut off the leaves. The strawberries usually keep for at about one week.






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Are you wondering what occurred on this date 100 years ago? It’s an important date in my family history. On this day in 1914 my paternal grandparents were married. The bride was a waitress and the groom a shipping clerk. Maggie and George immigrated to the United States in 1911 and 1912, respectively. They left their Irish homeland in Dublin, sailed across the Irish Sea to Liverpool, boarded a ship and crossed the Atlantic for nine days before arriving in Boston Harbor. Although Maggie’s brothers Jack and Joe had immigrated a few years earlier, she left behind her parents and four other siblings. George, whose parents died a few years earlier, left behind his only surviving family member, his brother Michael. He was never to see his brother again as Michael died in the Gallipoli Campaign during WWI, fighting for Great Britain as a member of the Royal Irish Rifles.

Maggie and George made their new life in America, settling in New England and raised three children. I did not know my grandmother as she died when my Dad was just a boy. I have one single memory of Grandpa who died when I was three years old. In researching my family history I’ve discovered numerous interesting facts about my grandparents, their parents, siblings and their lives in Dublin. I hope soon to visit my ancestor’s homeland and maybe I’ll even discover some Irish cousins.

These Bunting Flag Cookies were made with a biscuit cutter. They can be decorated in various color schemes to fit the occasion. They are popular for baby showers, birthdays and anniversaries. 


Bunting Cookies
Oblong Shortbread Cookies
Royal Icing for outlining and flooding tinted Cream with Wilton Ivory
Royal Icing for outlining and  flooding tinted Purple with AmeriColor Regal Purple
Royal Icing for flooding tinted Coral with AmeriColor Peach
Royal Icing for flooding tinted Yellow with AmeriColor Lemon Yellow
Royal Icing for flooding tinted with AmeriColor Turquoise
Disposable piping bags & couplers
Squeeze bottles
Wilton Decorating Tip #2

Outline cookie with #2 tip in cream icing.

Flood cookie with cream icing.

Pipe string with #2 tip in purple outline icing.

Pipe flag with #2 tip in coral icing.

Pipe flag with #2 tip in turquoise icing.

Pipe flag with #2 tip in purple flood icing.

Pipe flag with #2 tip in yellow icing. Let dry overnight.






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Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.
Steve Jobs

It doesn't matter that your dream came true if you spent your whole life sleeping. So get out there and go for it, but don't be caught waiting … nothing ever happens in the future. Whatever happens happens now, so live your life where the action is — now. 
Jerry Zucker

Do one thing at a time. Give each experience all your attention. Try to resist being distracted by other sights and sounds, other thoughts and tasks, and when it is, guide your mind back to what you're doing.
John Walsh

Take action. Every puny little thing that you've ever accomplished is the result of taking action. You have a choice. You can either be a passive victim of circumstance or you can be the active hero of your own life.
Bradley Whitford

These cookies were decorated in University of Maryland colors for my nephew's graduation party.

Graduation Cookies
Graduation Cap Shortbread Cookies
Royal Icing for outlining and flooding tinted White with AmeriColor Super White
Royal Icing for outlining tinted Red with AmeriColor Super Red
Royal Icing for outlining tinted Yellow with AmeriColor Lemon Yellow
Disposable piping bags & couplers
Squeeze bottles
Wilton Decorating Tips #2, #3

Outline cookie with #2 tip in white icing

Flood cookie with white icing.
Pipe tassel of cap with #3 tip in yellow icing. Let dry one hour.

Pipe outline of cap with #2 tip in red icing.

Pipe button and string with #2 tip in red icing. 

Let dry overnight.

 Star Cookie tutorial here





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