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Strawberry Shortcake Cake for 15...

hey all, gonna do a strawberry shortcake layer cake for a birthday this weekend. needs to be for 15. thinking chiffon layer (2-3) with macerated berries and a whipped cream filling...2 questions:

1) better to do a sheet cake style for this many?

2) anyone have a better filling idea/recipe?

many thanks!

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  1. In the July 2007 issue of Martha Stewart Living, the cover was a beautiful Strawberry (and blueberry) Shortcake. I made it that year & it was a huge, huge success. It has a sweet biscuit that's sliced in half & filled with whipped cream & berries & then berries are put in the cut outs on top (they were stars for July 4th). And the great thing about it- it can be made up to 3 hours in advance without it getting soggy! It serves 12-15 & was just FANTASTIC!

    If you go to her website, under recipes search for Summer Shortcake.

    Or, you can make a really good poundcake b/c they serve lots of people & then have whipped cream & the macerated berries on the side. Of course, it's not as pretty a presentation, but it does taste good.

    1. If not doing individual biscuits for the shortcake, I would definitely do a sheet cake (2, I think you meant number of layers by 2-3) for your crowd; beyond that, macerated berries and whipped cream is the only filling for this dessert. Where are you getting berries this time of year-frozen or otherrwise?

      1. A gal after my own shortcake heart! SSC is my birthday cake request too! One of my favorite versions (and trying new ones each year IS part of the happy birthday fun) involves lemon pound cake sliced super thin with sweetened vanilla bean whipped cream and candied lemon peel between each layer of cake and then fresh sliced strawberries which have been tossed in peach champagne and then spooned over the top and sides of the cake. So good!

        Happy birthday!

        1. If you're going to do ONE cake (as opposed to individual servings), might I suggest using a biscuit recipe as opposed to a sheet cake?

          Bake two sheets of biscuit, make your filling, spread the filling on top of one biscuit sheet, then top it with the other sheet of biscuit.

          Alternatively, might consider using sheets of pound cake.

          Just a thought. Good luck.

          (As a personal preference, I really detest strawberry shortcakes made with a simple sheetcake recipe).

          2 Replies
          1. re: ipsedixit

            Yeah, I'm a shortcake purist. "Short" cake means biscuits. And I love strawberry shortcake with biscuits that are made with heavy cream with a nice sprinkling of demarara sugar on top. I make mine freeform like "drop" style scones. I'd make a stack of these instead of a cakey cake.

            1. re: sbp

              Absolutely. Biscuits support the weight of the fruit without sogging down like a classic sponge, and the buttery layers that break off in shards and "spoon up" the berries and cream......mmmmm. I would SO do biscuits. Big, slightly-sweet Cat'shead sized biscuits, ya know? Go big, or.....
              Anyway, people especially love anything individual. Have a happy day!

          2. OP here... respect everyone's input, but it's a kid and he's turning 12. his mom definitely wants a big cake that can be decorated and he can blow out candles on... so unless i can convince momma that something else would be good/fun, it's gonna be a cake... unless i do biscuit sheets, but am concerned about how well these will cook.

            if it will appease the gallery here, perhaps i'll just call it a strawberry layer cake, layer chiffon cake with macerated strawberries and vanilla cream cheese frosting and call it a day.

            5 Replies
            1. re: Emme

              For a kid I'd go with a cake instead of a biscuit: chiffon, angel food cake or a white or yellow basic cake baked in a 9 x 13 inch oblong pan then split & filled should be more than enough for 15 people. Personally, I'd go with fresh whipped cream with maybe some vanilla beans mixed in and a good dusting of powdered sugar just before serving.

              1. re: Emme

                Hey Emme,

                Totally respect the need for a traditional cake-type presentation, but that doesn't meant a biscuit or a traditional shortcake sheet is out of the question.

                Consider the biscuit (or poundcake) approach I outlined above, and then spread whip cream on top and around the cake, just like you would with chocolate ganache for a cake. Then you can still decorate and stick candles on the "cake" because the whipped cream will hold them.

                Just a thought.

                1. re: Emme

                  Last year, I fell in love with the 1-2-3-4 cake that's in Alice Waters' THE ART OF SIMPLE FOOD. I've probably made a hundred of them, and I don't bother to separate the eggs. It's a really good, basic yellow cake. And I know from personal experience that it makes a great strawberry shortcake. I happen to prefer biscuits, too, but this 1-2-3-4 cakes, well, I love it.

                  You could make a couple of half-sheet pans. I'm not sure how many times the recipe you'd need to make. I've never done it. I use two nine-inch rounds for each batch, which IMO is not enough for 15, unless they all want "just a slivah (sliver)," like my grandmother.

                  1. re: Emme

                    Couldn't tell it was for a kid. Strawberry shortcake is a bit sophisticated for a crowd of 12 year olds. I would do layer cake for decorating purposes, but add some thickener like sure-jel to the berries. Kids may not like the "soaked cake" texture, you might want the berries to be more jam like and sit on the cake, not in it.

                    1. re: sbp

                      Even as a child, I hated any kind of "jel" texture other than preserves. I would stop eating any such gummy mess, run into the kitchen, and spit it out in the sink. OTOH, I've loved cake that was soaked with macerated berries since long before I knew the word "macerated." (I don't like Dulce de Leche cake, however.)

                      I still hate anything with a gummy texture. I bought what I thought was a cinnamon crumb coffee cake at a so-called good local bakery the other day, and it had a layer of really gummy preserves between the cake and the crumb topping. I took one bite and gave the rest of the cake to a friend who was over.

                  2. You're definitely going the right way! Strawberry shortcake cakes are my favorite!

                    I normally make strawberry shortcake cakes with a vanilla sponge sponge cake, fresh stabilized whipped cream and sliced strawberries. Pretty simple, yet so delicious and satisfying I did not macerate the strawberries because I was afraid of major bleeding. It was in the form of sheet cake too.

                    I think a chiffon cake would work out too, but a cream cheese frosting might be a bit heavy for this type of cake. I have never tried it, but it definitly might work.

                    Good luck and please update and let us know what you decided on!

                    1. Strawberry Shortbread Cakes - this is a stack of cookies, delicious version of Strawberry Shortcake but not traditional:

                      Serves 8

                      Roll the dough on a generously sugared board. The sugar makes the shortbread crusty and crunchy.

                      Preheat oven to 350
                      Line a baking sheet with parchment paper

                      1/2 lb. Unsalted butter, at room temperature
                      1/2 c. confectioner’s sugar, sifted
                      2 c. all-purpose unbleached flour
                      1/4 tsp. Salt
                      2 Qt. Strawberries, washed and hulled
                      2 Tbsp. Granulated sugar
                      2 c. heavy cream
                      1 tsp. Vanilla extract
                      1/4 c. melted, cooled apple jelly

                      In electric mixer, cream butter until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Gradually add the confectioners’ sugar and beat until combined. Add the flour and salt, mixing until just combined. Do not over mix.

                      On a well-sugared surface, rolll out the dough 1/4 inch thick. Using a fluted biscuit cutter (she recommends 4 1/2 inch but I had only a 3 1/2 inch), cut the dough into rounds and transfer to the cookie sheet with a large spatula. I re-rolled the scrapa to make the 16 shortbreads. Bake unitl somewhat firm but still pale, about 20 – 25 minutes. Cook on the sheet unitl firm, then move to rack.

                      Cut the strawberries in half and toss with the sugar. Let macerate 1 hour minimum.

                      Beat the cream with the vanilla and apple jelly until stiff.

                      If they let you, layer 1 cookie with strawbeerries and cream, then another cookie, strawberries and cream.

                      1. You might have already decided but, if not, the most popular strawberry "shortcake" I've made is with a tres leches cake, but not as heavily milked. It's moist but doesn't ooze milk when cut. I serve the strawberries (macerated in rum but maybe you could skip the rum here...) on the side, frost w/ rum whipped cream. It's easily done in a sheet cake style.

                        I agree about cream cheese frosting being a little strong for a chiffon cake like this.

                        1. Thanks all. To report back...
                          I ended up doing a Strawberry Cream Layer cake to avoid the verbal chastisement over "shortcake." I did a double chiffon layer cake, with a lemon curd filling, brown sugar and vanilla macerated strawberries, and a whipped cream filling and frosting. Decorated the top with strawberries, writing gel, and carved the birthday boy's name out of whole strawberries. I drizzled the macerated strawberry juice over the inside cuts of the cake layers before putting on the lemon curd. It went over quite well.
                          Thanks again for the input.

                          7 Replies
                          1. re: Emme

                            That sounds just great...I don't suppose there's any left??

                              1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                a few photos i snapped...

                                and to sbp, i really wasn't afear... i know suggestions here are in good faith, as i make them myself :)

                                1. re: Emme

                                  for some reason the middle one rotated, and i didn't unrotate it... my apologies, just a gratuitous side view of the filling with done. also, that's taken in *their* fridge... the domino's lava cake box is not mine...

                              2. re: Emme

                                Sound wonderful, and kudos to the kids for going for such a "grown up" dessert. I don't think there was any intent at chastisement. Many of us prefer "short cake" shortcake, and didn't know it was for a kid who would want a decorated cake. Chowhound home cooking is a very friendly board - I always assume the posts are made with the best intentions.

                                1. I saw a recipe on one of FN shows that I plan on making very soon. She made a little tiny tart using the Maria's biscuit like in cuisinart. Pressed that into a springform tart pan, then baked them off for a few minutes. Next,she mixed fresh macerated stawberries with a block of cream cheese for the filling, adding a package of whipped cream topping with vanilla. Then creamed it all into the strawberry mix and filled the baked pie bottoms.This is the short reader's digesnt version but I tell you the LOOKED heavenly!
                                  So not to trust my scattered recipe, I made sure to look it up. I found the recipe, which I plan on making very soon. Perhaps this might be the answer to what you looking for?

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: chef chicklet

                                    thanks but see a few posts above for my final decision and outcome photos.