Confession: I’m crazy about shortcake. But for the past several years, I’ve dallied between numerous recipes without being able to settle on one.
I grew up on a sweet sponge cake version, which is called “Never Fail Cake” and always sunk in the middle for me. Tasty though. Then there’s Shelia’s drier cake, more like a slightly sweet biscuit. And Vonnie’s crumb cake, which we liked for the sugar crumbs but I never baked quite right: the crumbs burned before the cake was done, kind of thing.
For our first shortcake this year, I started fresh. I began with Never Fail Cake (adjusted according to last year’s notes), which has become a truly delicious, moist cake. One that does not fall in the middle (since I tweaked the fat content and rising agent). One that does not, as Mr. Putter would say, break your toe if you drop it. A light and airy cake.
But I topped the cake batter, on a whim, with half a batch of crumbs for fruit pie: my sister’s mother-in-law’s recipe. (She has a great title, eh? She also goes by my brother-in-law’s mother and my nephews’ grandmother, and there’s more where that came from.)
The crumbs are lovely, with brown sugar and butter, and a few oats and pecans. They turn into a fantastic streusel on top of the cake. (If amounts below are doubled, they’re also great on pie.) Definitely good enough to be eaten warm from the oven, without strawberries, as a coffee cake. But with berries, it’s Mmmmmmmmmmmm.
Try it? Let me know what you think.
Strawberry Streusel Shortcake
- 4 Tbsp butter softened
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 1/4 cups flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans
- 2 1/2 Tbsp butter melted
- 2 Tbsp old-fashioned oats
- 1/8 tsp salt
Cream butter and sugar in an electric mixer.
Add egg and beat until fluffy.
Add remaining ingredients, and mix only until well combined.
Place batter in a greased 9×9" pan.
In a separate bowl, stir streusel ingredients together with a fork. Sprinkle over cake batter.
Bake at 350* for 22-25 min till done (using toothpick test).
Serve with fresh strawberries, and milk or whipped cream.