Diana's Desserts - www.dianasdesserts.com

Strawberry Shortcakes for a Crowd

Servings: 24
If you are planning a large holiday or special celebration dinner or brunch, here's a recipe for Strawberry Shortcakes that will make a wonderful dessert for a large amount of people.

For Shortcakes:
12 oz. sliced almonds, toasted
1 lb. Plus 14 ounces all-purpose flour
2 tsp. salt
9 oz. granulated sugar, divided
3 tbsp. Plus 1 tsp. baking powder
12 oz. (3 sticks/1 1/2 cups/339 g) unsalted butter (cold), cubed
2 1/2 cups heavy cream, divided

For Lemon Cream:
24 large egg yolks
8 large eggs
1 lb. Plus 6 oz. sugar, divided
2 2/3 cups lemon juice
5 1/3 cups heavy cream
4 lb. Plus 8 oz. sliced strawberries (or other fresh fruit)

Sugar, as needed
12 oz. sliced almonds, toasted, divided

Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC).

In food processor, process almonds until finely ground. In mixer bowl fitted with paddle attachment, combine almonds, flour, salt, 5 ounces of the sugar and baking powder. Add butter; mix on low speed until butter is the size of small peas. Slowly add 2 cups of the cream, mixing until dough just comes together. On lightly floured work surface, roll half of the dough to 3/4-inch thickness. Using a 3-inch biscuit cutter, cut twelve shortcakes. Repeat with remaining dough. Brush tops with remaining 1/2 cup cream; sprinkle with remaining 4 ounces sugar.

Bake on ungreased cookie sheet in preheated 350ºF (180ºC) oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Makes 24 shortcakes.

To Make Lemon Cream:
In a large stainless steel bowl, whisk together egg yolks, eggs and 1 pound of the sugar. Stir in lemon juice. Place bowl over a pot of simmering water; stir constantly with rubber spatula until mixture begins to thicken. Switching to a wire whisk, cook 5 minutes or until thickened. Strain through fine strainer into non-reactive container; cover surface directly with plastic wrap. Chill completely.

In mixer bowl fitted with whip attachment, beat cream and remaining 6 ounces sugar to soft peaks. Fold in chilled lemon cream. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

Makes about 12 cups lemon cream.

To Assemble Shortcakes:
Warm 1 shortcake in oven. Toss 3 ounces strawberries with sugar, as needed. Spoon 1/2 cup Lemon Cream over shortcake. Top with 1 tablespoon toasted almonds and sweetened strawberries. Garnish with 1 tablespoon toasted almonds.

Date: April 18, 2004