Grandma Piper’s Strawberry Shortcake 🍓 recipe

This is a re-written version of my grandma’s recipe. I inhaled this as a kid.

It’s basically a really massive “drop” biscuit that you then slice in to portions and drown in strawberries + milk. It is one of the quickest and easiest things to make, a must between May and June.

You can use oat milk instead, just try to use something as similar to whole milk in consistency as you can find. The smaller the strawberries, the sweeter they are. A sturdy straw works fantastically as a strawberry core-er.

Also, you can make this ahead of time, but it’s really best enjoyed the same day you make it. The crispy bits of the cake go a little soft after the first day, and the strawberries, while still delicious, start to look a little sad and anemic. It’ll still taste good, but I recommend re-warming a slice of cake if you’re having it the next day or so.

One final thought: This makes quite a lot of cake + strawberries… Might be worth halving this recipe if you’re not serving many people.

As my grandma wrote in her recipe book (she was confident about this recipe, and she wasn’t often wrong): “MMMM good!”

Serves 6 people generously.

Preheat the oven to 350F (175C), and butter a 9″ pie plate.

In a large bowl, stir together 2 c (240 g) flour, 2 T sugar, 3 t baking powder, and 1 t salt.

Add ⅓ c (75 g) cold butter, and cut it in with a pastry blender.

Stir in 1 c (235 mL) milk by hand just until the flour mixture is moistened.

Scrape in to the buttered pie plate in a big mound, then bake at 350F (175C) for 40 minutes or until done.*

While the cake is baking, core, hull, and slice about 1 quart (~1½–2 lbs) strawberries and place in a medium bowl with around ½ c (200 g) sugar, then stir to combine. Let this sit for the rest of the baking time to draw the juices out, creating a syrup.**

When the cake is ready to go, let it cool for about 5 minutes before serving. To serve, cut the mound in to slices and then slice each piece horizontally in half. Place the bottom half in a large soup bowl, top generously with the prepared strawberries in syrup, place the top half on top of the strawberries, and then spoon more strawberries on top. Pour in a good amount of milk in a little lake around the cake.

* It’s important to make sure the cake is well baked, otherwise the texture is quite gluey. But you don’t want to over-bake it either. The listening test works well here. If you take it out at 40 minutes and can clearly hearing it sizzling and crackling, that means that there is steam escaping, meaning that there is still liquid in the batter that needs to be baked out. Stick the cake in for another 3–5 minutes at a time until the crackling is very faint or gone.

** Don’t skimp too much on the sugar. You want it to be pretty sweet since there is very little sugar in the cake, and the syrup is meant to soak in to the cake when serving.

Edit 19 March 2024: OH MY GOD, I screwed up the gram measurement for the flour. 🤦🏻‍♀️ It should be 240, not 120. I am SO SORRY to anyone that tried this with that measurement before…