Thursday, June 26, 2014

Grain-Free Strawberry Shortcake

It is strawberry season in Michigan!! This time of year brings back a lot of memories for me with my beloved Grandma Guernsey and my mom taking us strawberry picking and then home to make strawberry freezer jam. There is a crazy amount of sugar in the jam, but it is so good! I will be making some of the original and some of my chia seed jam ... the real stuff is too good to pass up and it's ok to have a tablespoon or five every once in a while. Since my mom is in Hawaii with my dad, Mara and I took Charlotte on our own this year for her first time picking strawberries. Since she is only two she enjoyed picking everything that looked like a berry... rotten, dirty, on the ground, white, you name it... she also wasn't too picky on which ones she ate, so we have to intervene a few times to help her find the red ones on the plant, not the ground.

Driving home the car smelled so good... almost 20 pounds of fresh strawberries is heavenly. We didn't get many big ones, and also didn't get as many as we wanted, for two reasons....1. We went to a natural farm and without the use of chemicals and products to make them massive they were all "regular" sized or little and 2. Charlotte was hard to keep an eye on, especially when the school-kid tour groups arrived. But it was a great morning and a tradition I a excited to pass along to her. 

This recipe uses coconut flour. If you want to use almond flour you will use a little more because coconut flour is a little more absorbent. Start with a 1/2 cup of almond flour, mix in the rest of the ingredients, and then add a little more at a time to get the right consistency. These flours take a second to thicken so be patient, you don't want the biscuits to turn out too dry. The biscuits can be made less sweet, they already aren't super sweet, but you can add chives or jalapenos and use them in chili, pour sausage and gravy over them for breakfast, or even use them as buns for a breakfast sandwich. 

Grain-Free Strawberry Shortcake

- 1/2 Cup Coconut Flour*** see note in recipe
- 4 eggs
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- 3 Tbsp Raw Honey
- 5 Tbsp Coconut Oil, softened or melted
- 11/2 tsp Baking Powder
- Pinch of Salt
- Dash of Cinnamon or Nutmeg (optional)
- 2 Cups Fresh Strawberries, hulled and quartered
- 1 Tbsp Coconut Sugar (or honey)
- 1 Tbsp Lemon Juice

Preheat oven to 375 degrees
1. Mix coconut flour through cinnamon (if using) in a bowl until well combined. Don't over-mix... some lumps are ok. 

*** NOTE: The batter should be able to be "mounded" onto a cookie sheet without running into the mound next to it. If it is too runny add more flour a tablespoon at a time and mix... the most I used total was 2/3 cup flour. This depends the brand of coconut flour, not sure why. Give it some time in between mixing and adding more because the batter tends to thicken over time.

--- if you are letting the batter "rest" now would be a good time to combine the strawberries, coconut sugar, and lemon juice in a bowl. Let them sit out or in a fridge and the juices of the strawberries will start to come out and make a tasty syrup... this is called maceration and has everything to do with osmosis :)

2. Using about 2-3 Tablespoons of batter, make mounds on a cookie sheet. No need to flatten them. This recipe will make about 10 biscuits. 

3. Bake for 10-12 minutes until the top has started to brown and the middle of each biscuit is firm. Remove from the pan immediately so the bottoms don't burn and cool on a wire rack. 

4. Slice the biscuits in half and top with the strawberries before putting the top back on... or just use two biscuits since they are not very thick. ** If they turn out really flat you might not have added enough flour, or had the oven hot enough. But even if they are flat, don't throw them out.... they are still tasty! Just use two :) 

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