For the love of food

news: For the love of food

In this new regular column, Hope A. Thurlby presents a varied selection of recipes, which combine the best of Portuguese and English cookery.

Strawberry Fayre – part 1

LUSCIOUS, SWEET, red and plump, strawberries are in season and their smell is enticing as you pass great mounds of them in the outdoor markets. Strawberries with cream and sugar are surely enjoyed by the angels, but they also lend themselves to many delicious dishes and drinks.

Strawberry Shortcakes

For the ‘cakes’:

1 1/2 cups (250g) plain flour

1 tsp salt

1 tbs sugar

3 tsp double acting baking powder

6 tbs unsalted butter

1/2 cup (10cl) thick cream

Sift the dry ingredients together and then cut in the butter, until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add the cream and stir until the mix comes away from the sides of the bowl. Turn the dough out onto a floured board and knead gently for a minute. Roll out to about 1/2 inch (2cm) and cut into rounds of 2 1/2 inches (5cm) each. Place on an ungreased baking sheet and cook in a hot oven (425½F / 200½C) for 10 to 14 minutes until lightly browned. This should make about 20 to 24 ‘cakes’.

For the filling:

1lb (500g) strawberries – washed, hulled and quartered

2-4 tbs sugar (depending on taste)

1 cup (20cl) whipped cream

Powdered sugar for garnish

Let this stand for an hour or so in the refrigerator. In individual dishes, put one ‘cake’ and cover it with whipped cream. Spoon a generous amount of the strawberry mixture on top and cover with a second ‘cake’. Sprinkle powdered sugar on top. Continue until each guest is served.