Thursday, June 30, 2011

A Farewell to Strawberries: Momofuku Style

Strawberry season came late this year. It's a typical sort of thing for us - wait all winter and spring for the season's crop to arrive and then when it does - don't anything with them. There's no doubt we're making a concerted effort to take advantage of the summer's fruit.

A Lone Fragolina

We have some alpines growing in the MGG [Mobile Ghetto Garden], but the reality is that there's a reason you don't see fragolina (baby-sized strawberries) at the farmers market - they take too damn long to pick. This baby strawberries pack a certain "wow" factor into any summer tart, but it's hard to find enough ripe ones to harvest at the same time.

The Mobile Ghetto Garden: Waiting to be deployed to any patch of sunlight

This is our farewell to strawberries for the time being. The Christina Tosi version is like none that I've ever had before. If I had to describe it, I'd have to say that it's somewhere between the softness of a butter cookie, with the volume of a biscuit. The dough is basically rolled in balls, chilled overnight (highly recommended), and then right before they go in the oven, they are rolled in powdered sugar. The sugar adds a sweetness that wouldn't otherwise be there.

The Momofuku Shortcakes with Macerated Strawberries

If I had one word of advice it would be to not overmix the dough. Like a flaky pie dough that is over mixed, these suckers will not rise and became thin and dense - almost bullet proof. If you don't chill them long enough there is no doubt they spread like an oil slick. Christina's recipes are usually written very well, but the four minutes it takes to mix the butter with the dry ingredients was a minute and a half too long for me. I did the recipe by eye the first time with no problems. The second time I took it the four minutes she said and it was over mixed. I did by eye the last time (noting how long it took) and they came out fine. These are hard to overcook, but if you under cook them they are going to suck.

The Momofuku Shortcake is unique and easy to put together. I haven't tried them with any other fruits, but the salty/sweet shortcakes seem to be a pretty versatile item that can be pared with anything with a lot of sugar in it.

Here is a link to the recipe.

Looking for other desserts? Check out our Food page here with a complete listing of our past creations. Enjoy!

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