"Tay, let's stop by Joe's Garden real quick," I say after dropping off V at preschool. It's on the way home.
We drive down the hill and around the bend to see the chipped white paint on the wooden sign announcing, "Strawberries." It was destiny!
My heart skips a little, and a surge of emotion floods my soul. It might sound silly, but awaiting the signal of fresh strawberries becomes me. Giddy like my daughters on their birthday morning. Stress & anxiety melts away, and all is right in the world when we step into that shackle shed boasting of season's bounty. There, under the dim lights & faint cloudy stream from outside sit perfection.
Shiny, shaped like women's figures (all different), but all sweet & delicious. Wind sweeps over them to tickle my olfactory sense. How the nose & the tongue are married--it took everything in me to not delight in them right then & there.
"MAMA!! OH, LOOK AT THE STRAWBERRIES!" Tay exclaims what my adult mouth wanted to sing.
"Yes, strawberries!" I reply with a warm smile, as she knows we will get some even before asking.
We buy two pints!
"Can you smell it? Do you see the colors?" I ask her.
She smells in deeply and sighs, "mmm, yes!"
Teaching the girls to smell in the fragrance, to smell in the moment. To use their senses to write down what living this moment in the season is to be. It is good, oh so very good.
We walk to the van as she sings, "strawberries, strawberries!," while I buckle her up, stare into her big chocolate eyes and give her a kiss. We don't wait to get home to take our first bite. Rather, I rub them off, hull it with my teeth and give her a present.
This is my Christmas in June, which boasts of homemade strawberry shortcake!
Strawberry Shortcake with Almond & Coconut Flour (printable recipe)
If you would like to roll these out, then you will need extra almond flour for your surface to do so. However, you will need to be extra gentle, as almond flour is much different from regular flour (more fragile). When gently patting them into rectangles in your hands, take a little almond flour or coconut flour to rub around, which decreases sticky hand syndrome. Makes 9 shortcakes
3 1/4 cups blanched almond flour
2 Tb coconut flour
2 tsp corn-free baking powder (I make my own, or just use 1 tsp baking soda)
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
4 Tb unsalted butter
2-4 Tb honey
2 tsp vanilla
egg, whisked, for coating before baking
2 pints of hulled, cleaned & sliced strawberries, set aside
Preheat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, mix dry ingredients (almond flour, coconut flour, baking powder, & salt). Set aside.
In a small bowl, combine all liquids (HWC, honey, eggs & vanilla).
Add chilled butter to dry ingredients and use a pastry blender to cut the butter into the flour mixture. You want pea sized butter.
Add the wet ingredients and combine with a fork until thoroughly combined. The dough will be sticky. Pat the dough by hand into rectangles (about 1/3 cup worth) & place on the lined sheet.
Brush tops with egg and bake at 12 minutes. Rotate halfway through baking time. Check on them, as almond & coconut flour can burn rather easily, especially at this high temperature. Your shortcake will be a golden brown.
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 Tb raw honey
Whisk cold whipping cream by hand in a metal bowl & whisk, until soft peaks form....OR...whip using an electric mixer at high speed, until soft peaks form. Add the honey and mix gently throughout.