2 CUPS S R FLOUR
1/2 CUP CASTER SUGAR
250 GRAMS BUTTER - cubed/chunks
1/4 CUP CREAM
1 TEASPOON VANILLA ESSENCE
THICKENED CREAM FOR FILLING
VANILLA ESSENCE TO TASTE
SUGAR TO TASTE
STRAWBERRIES, HULLED AND CHOPPED
Place flour and sugar in food processor and give a quick "whizz". Add butter pieces and whizz again until mixture resembles bread crumbs. Add egg, cream and vanilla and mix until a soft dough forms. If necessary, you may need to add a bit more cream to make the mix come together. Add 1 tablespoon at a time. Be Gentle with the Dough. Don't over mix. As soon as the mixture comes together, stop the food processor.
If your are making one big shortcake, line the cake tin with baking paper and place dough into cake tin. Press gently and spread the dough over the base of the cake tin. Place in the oven.
If you are making individual shortcakes, I got very techy here and weighed the whole ball of dough and then divided by 24. This gave me about 33 grams for each cake. I know, I know, fussy fussy, but it kept them all the same size and depth. Again, gently press the dough into the tin base.
Cook until golden. The individual cakes took about 12 minutes or so, and the bigger cake will take somewhere around 20 minutes. Just keep an eye on them and don't over cook them. Once golden remove pan from oven and leave cakes in tin for 5 minutes to cool a little. Turn on to a cake rack to finish cooling.
Use a serrated knife to carefully split the shortcake/s. With the heart shape, I did a small cut from the pointy end of the heart, and then working from the opposite end, sliced the hearts open. Less bits fell off doing this!!
I finished mine with a custard and cream filling and added strawberries. Whipped cream will be fine.
Place on a fancy plate and dust with icing sugar.
Now, some craftiness. I left the men in my life to fend for themselves for a couple of days last week and went up to Merimbula. Naturally, there is a breakfast shot:
Have any of you been to the New York Public Library site? There is the most amazing collection of prints that are down loadable. I had been looking for sea life pictures and put these together in plain white frames. The photos are ordinary, but you can see what they are.
here. If you are looking for images to use in your art, this is a great place to start.
I took a small suitcase with me, filled with a few crafty things to do. Mostly seaside tackiness, but a bit here and there is okay. I am inspired by Pinterest frequently and had seen a variety of letters done with a beach theme, so did mine in my usual over the top style.
These are now hanging in the bathroom.
My next piece was also Pinterest inspired. I bought the stick from a home décor shop and it has been languishing around the garage for some months (I know, I live in the bush but I bought a stick - I don't trust the ones in my backyard not to have a flock of critters living in them). I have been collecting sea themed beads and charms. Having used lots of my stash up for these pieces, it means I now have an excuse to go buy more. The mermaid that is in the letter above and hanging in the middle of "the stick", was a book mark I picked up at one of the craft shows. The beads sparkle in the morning sun.
I did the butterfly strand, just to use up some more of the beads. This is a single strand. I used a dab of E6000 in between a couple of the beads. I figured if the nylon thread gave way, not every single bead would be able to escape. Again, in a sunny spot and sparkles very prettily.
I took Bernice with me so in between the beads and seashells there was also a jelly roll quilt top in the process of being completed. There are not enough power points where I was working so the ironing board was in the kitchen, the machine was on the table with half finished sea shell letters, paint brushes. It was all good! My husband flew up to Merimbula on Tuesday last week. He had a shocking flight. The weather in the eastern states has been a bit wild. I had to drive down and pick him up at the airport - I saw him get off the plane with a white bag........his face was grey. When we got home, his only comment was, "good to see you have the place looking like home".
Whilst we were waiting at the airport, O'Reilly thought he might try the front seat for size. He was very happy when dad arrived.
Friends joined us for dinner one night. Sir Pester Alot ended up being blocked by the clothes airer. He is not happy with the new "no snacks for you" regime.
So it was a nice few days away. Suitcase came back a little lighter and a roll of fabric got used. Still have a few seams to stitch. I remember when I have sewn about 8 seams that I hate piecing, but at least I have a nearly finished quilt top and then I can applique all over it.