For the fruit:
- 8 cups (about 2½ lbs.) fresh strawberries, hulled
- 4-6 tbsp. (1½-2½ oz.) granulated sugar
For the shortcakes:
- 2 cups (10 oz.) all-purpose flour
- 5 tbsp. (2¼ oz.) granulated sugar, divided
- 1 tbsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. kosher salt
- 8 tbsp. (4 oz.) cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- ½ cup plus 1 tbsp. whole milk or half-and-half
- 1 large egg while, lightly beaten
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 tbsp. confectioners’ sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
step 1: Show Images
To make the fruit, quarter about half of the berries and place them in a large bowl. Coarsely chop with a pastry blender, two forks, or a few chop attacks (technical term) of the immersion blender. Add in the sugar (use the lesser amount for sweeter berries). Slice the remaining berries, add to the bowl, and toss well to combine. Set aside for 30 minutes or up to 2 hours.
step 2: Show Images
To make the shortcakes, heat the oven to 425˚ F. Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, 3 tablespoons of the sugar, the baking powder and salt. Pulse to combine. Scatter the butter over the dry ingredients and pulse into the flour mixture in about 10-15 short pulses, until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Transfer to a medium bowl. In a measuring cup, combine the milk with the beaten egg and mix together. Pour into the bowl with the flour mixture and fold together with a spatula until large clumps form. Turn the mixture out onto a floured work surface and knead gently just until the dough comes together. (Be careful to avoid over-kneading, as this will result in dense shortcakes.)
step 3: Show Images
Form the dough into a 6 x 8-inch rectangle, about ¾-inch thick. Slice in half lengthwise and into thirds widthwise to create 6 shortcakes. Transfer to the prepared baking sheets, spacing them a few inches apart. Brush the tops lightly with the egg white. Sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar.
step 4: Show Images
Bake 14-16 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through the baking time, until the tops are golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
step 5: Show Images
When ready to serve, combine the heavy cream, confectioners’ sugar, and vanilla in a medium bowl. Whisk until medium-stiff peaks form. Cut the shortcakes in half. Place the bottom half on a serving plate, top with some of the berry mixture and a dollop of whipped cream. Place the other half of the cake on top. Serve immediately.