This recipe from the Washington Post cuts back on the butter, sugar, flour and cream and gives seasonal fruit centerstage, including those firm, juicy and sweet blueberries from Idaho’s neighbor.
First, the berries are tossed with a touch of honey to heighten their sweetness and allow them to soften slightly. The biscuits they are piled into are made with a mix of whole-grain and all-purpose flours, and with oil instead of butter, so they are tender and light with a crisp exterior but are better for you than a typical shortcake biscuit.
They are also easy to make, because you just drop the batter onto a baking sheet — no rolling or cutting needed.
The crowning dollop also has a tasty and healthful twist: It is a blend of lightly sweetened, vanilla-scented whipped cream and Greek yogurt, which adds a pleasant hint of tartness and further highlights the dish’s sweet-tart tastes.
Mixed Berry Shortcake
8 servings; make ahead: The honeyed berries need to rest in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour and up to 1 day.
For the berries and topping
1 pound mixed berries, such as blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and/or strawberries
1 tablespoon honey
1/3 cup chilled heavy whipping cream
2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
1/3 cup non-fat, plain Greek yogurt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the biscuits
1/2 cup whole-wheat pastry flour or regular whole-wheat flour
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup well-shaken low-fat buttermilk
1/4 cup canola or other neutral-tasting oil
For the berries and topping: Wash the berries and hull any strawberries. Halve or quarter any large berries, then place the berries in a large bowl. Drizzle with the honey, then toss to combine. Cover and place in the refrigerator until ready to serve, for at least 1 hour and up to 1 day.
Pour the cream into the bowl of a stand mixer or handheld electric mixer; beat on medium-high speed until thickened, then add the confectioners’ sugar; continue beating until soft peaks form. Gently fold in the yogurt and vanilla extract. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use (up to 1 day in advance).
For the biscuits: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Let the berries come to room temperature.
Whisk together the flours, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk together the buttermilk and oil in a separate medium bowl.
Add the buttermilk mixture to the flour mixture, stirring just until moistened; do not over-mix. Drop the batter in 8 mounds (about 3 tablespoons each) onto the baking sheet. Bake until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Let cool slightly.
To serve, use a serrated knife to gently cut the biscuits in half horizontally. Place each bottom half on a plate, top each with about 1/3 cup of the berries and their accumulated juices, and a dollop of whipped topping. Cap with the top halves of the biscuits, and serve.
Nutrition per serving: 220 calories, 4 g protein, 26 g carbohydrates, 11 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 15 mg cholesterol, 200 mg sodium, 4 g dietary fiber, 12 g sugar
From nutritionist and cookbook author Ellie Krieger. Krieger’s most recent cookbook is “Weeknight Wonders: Delicious Healthy Dinners in 30 Minutes or Less” (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013). She blogs and offers a weekly newsletter at www.elliekrieger.com.