Plain and Simple Sugared Strawberries with Cornmeal Shortcakes, E.A.T. #24

A craving sets in this time of year for the first Spring Tennessee strawberries. This week baskets and baskets arrived at my local, downtown Nashville Farmer’s Market. Juicy and plump with the wonderful variations in shape and size not seen in supermarket berries.

Aren’t they beautiful?

Cut up and gently tossed with raw sugar awaiting a shortcake.

I am not a big fan of store-bought shortcakes when it is so easy to make my own. I enjoy a shortcake with a bit of texture and flavor which I get by adding cornmeal to the mixture. Buttery & barely sweet with a bit of crunch. Soft enough to soak up those berry juices.

Light golden brown right from the oven.

Here….have a bite. Treat yourself…strawberry season doesn’t last long. It’s as Easy-As-This!

Sugared Strawberries with Sweetened Cornmeal Shortcakes

Ingredients:

  • 1 quart of local strawberries, capped, sliced
  • a few tablespoons of raw sugar, to taste for berries + 1 tablespoon for the shortcake
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 cup heavy, cold cream
  • Ice cream or whipped cream, optional

Directions:

  1. Toss sliced berries with a few tablespoons raw sugar to taste. Set aside.
  2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  3. Whisk together remaining 1 tablespoon raw sugar, the flour, cornmeal, baking powder & salt.
  4. Work cold butter into the flour mix using your fingers or a pastry cutter.
  5. Drizzle heavy cream over the top of the flour and stir to bring together to form a somewhat wet dough. Use your fingers to bring together into a ball. Knead a few times.
  6. Pat dough out into a rectangle about 10-12 inches x 5 inches. Cut into 6 pieces and place on a baking pan lined with parchment.
  7. Bake for about 20-30 minutes or until golden brown and puffy. Remove to cool on a rack.
  8. Serve cornmeal warm or room temperature shortcakes split open and topped with juicy strawberries. Add a scoop of ice cream of a dollop of whipped cream if desired.

Teresa Blackburn          www.teresablackburnfoodstyling.com     http://www.foodonfifth.com

Strawberry Tart…From Blog Post to Magazine Cover

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It is a proud moment in blogging when a post ends up on the cover of a magazine!

In May of 2015 I posted a blog featuring A Mother’s Day Tennessee Strawberry Tart” and now May 2016…one year later my tart is the cover story of the May/June Edible Nashville. Thanks Jill Melton and Edible!

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There is nothing so sweet as the beginning of Strawberry Season. Every May the Downtown Nashville Farmer’s Market begins to fill up with local farmers offering pints and quarts of berries and this May is no different. I bought my first berries this past weekend. I picked up a couple of extra cartons for gifts for my daughters. Yes Strawberries do say love!

So in honor of Tennessee Strawberry time I am going to  share previous posts I have done which feature fresh, local, Spring Strawberries.

Here is where you will find the full recipe and original story with how-to photos to make “A Mother’s Day Tennessee Strawberry Tart”.

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Want to keep some of that berry-goodness for later in the year? “Strawberries Fresh Picked & Put Up!” is the easiest of recipes for making a few jars of freezer strawberry jam.

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  “Saturday, Spring Strawberries, Buttered Toast…..”  My partner, Wouter, shares his Dutch “recipe” for enjoying the first Spring strawberries…sugared on buttered toast.

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And last, but not least, if you want to spend a bit more time and really impress your family and friends then you might want to try out this recipe for “Ruby Red Strawberry Victoria Sponge Cake with Lemon Mascarpone Filling”. It is a stunner!

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If I were a berry I would enjoy resting on top of a sponge cake, dusted with powdered sugar….or swirling around in sweet juice in a canning jar for all to admire….or being wrapped up snuggly in a blanket of dough. Wouldn’t you?

http://www.teresablackburnfoodstyling.com       http://www.foodonfifth.com

A Refreshing & Intoxicating “Third Thursday Community Potluck Cookbook” and a “Spicy Golden Mary”

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Above is a cool, refreshing & quite intoxicating “Spicy Golden Mary”.

Below is the refreshing & intoxicating cover of the “Third Thursday Community Potluck Cookbook” by Nancy Vienneau (her blog is Good Food Matters). This book’s release date is just a few days away, June 17th, 2014 and will be available at your local bookstores and on-line. It’s a beauty full of wonderful stories of food and folks. The “monthly chapters” feature seasonal produce & recipes from each month of the year. You can cook your way through 5 years of Third Thursday Potluck gatherings all in one book. I was so pleased to do the food and prop styling for this book, which was a real labor of love.

Third Thursday FINAL

What do these two things have in common you might ask?

One is a much-anticipated cookbook that chronicles the stories and recipes that have been shared over the past 5 years, every Third Thursday of every month, at one of Nashville’s best kept secrets. Nancy, and her friend, Gigi Gaskins (who owns HatWRKS) started this potluck as a way for a group of food friends to get together, share incredible seasonal recipes & foods, have a glass of wine and talk. There is no set theme except for the season.  As the cover says, this truly is a potluck like no other.

To herald this book’s release I want to share with you a recipe of mine from the book. The deliciously refreshing & intoxicating “Spicy Golden Mary “.  Get the book for this and so many more enticing recipes and stories. This recipe is from July’s Chapter “The Big Tomato”.

Before we have a “Spicy Golden Mary”, here are two events you will not want to miss if you happen to live, or be visiting the Nashville, TN area on these dates….lots of fun and good food.

This one is on Tuesday night, 6/17……

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This is on “Third Thursday”, 6/19 of course! Bring a dish and a drink (wine, etc) if you like and come join all of us…..

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Here is how to make my  recipe,
“Spicy Golden Mary”
Orange heirloom tomatoes
1. Core and chop 4-5 pounds of very ripe yellow tomatoes. (About 7 cups).
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heirloom tomatoes
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2. You will also need 1 1/2 cups good quality Vodka such as Tito’s from Austin, Texas or Ketel One from Holland.
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3. Puree chopped tomatoes in a food processor fitted with a chopping blade until smooth.
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4. Strain through a fine mesh sieve to remove the pulp, pressing down gently with a wooden spoon to get all the juice from the pulp.
IMG_1649Whoa! Look at that beautiful golden tomato juice.
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5. To the bowl of tomato juice add the following:  the Vodka, 2 tsp grated horseradish, a generous pinch of salt to taste, freshly ground black pepper to taste, 1 tbsp Serrano chili-lime pepper sauce (or 2 tsp Tabasco sauce), 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice and 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce. Taste and adjust seasonings.
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7. As I was making this for a  Third Thursday Potluck evening I used two bottles to transport it to the gathering. First I made a label on my computer of a giant tomato on a gold background and added type identifying what was in the bottles. All the ingredients were listed, along with my blog name and a catchy phrase “Drink your breakfast for dinner right now!”.
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I cut up some fresh limes & celery sticks, packed it all up in my antique carrier and off to Third Thursday!
Here is a toast to all the past Third Thursday Community Potluck dinners and to many, many more! Congratulations Nancy on your beautiful cookbook!

“Kale, Kale, Beautiful Kale, Pesto”

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Big beautiful bunches of Kale...Red Russian with its purplish-red stems & lacy tips, Lacinato Kale very sturdy with the deepest dark green color, and our old, familiar favorite, Curly Kale rather fluffy with white stems & veins all piled high and dewy fresh at the Nashville Farmer’s Market.

Like the “it girl”, Kale, is the “it green”…the green “of the moment”…the “if you own a restaurant in this century Kale is a must for your menu” green…unless you have been living under a rock or off-the-grid completely you know this…right? Right.

To celebrate the “it-ness” of Kale, it’s bounty, beauty and health benefits I came up with this oh-so-easy recipe for “Kale, Beautiful Kale, Pesto“.

Kale Pesto on Pasta

Here is all you will need:

1 bunch of Kale, rinsed & patted dry, middle stem trimmed out, leaves broken into bite-size pieces.

2 garlic cloves, 1 cup toasted walnuts, 1 cup shredded Gruyère Cheese, good olive oil, 1 lemon, sea salt & freshly ground black pepper, plus a chunk of Parmigiano Reggiano to grate over servings.

Kales Pesto Ingredients

Here is all you need to do:

1. Place garlic cloves & walnuts in a food processor fitted with the cutting blade. Pulse until nuts & garlic are chopped, but not too finely.

ground walnuts

2. Add Kale pieces, fresh lemon juice & sea salt to processor bowl. Pulse while adding about 1/2 to 3/4 cup olive oil to mixture. Stop & scrape down bowl if you need to. Add Gruyère to the mix and pulse a few times to make a nice paste. Add more or less oil depending on how you like your pesto. I prefer a chunkier, less oily pesto.

lemon juice and Kale

Kale Pesto

3. Top a bowl of hot pasta with a dollop of Kale Pesto, grind some black pepper on top,  add some freshly grated Parmesan..and a glass of a crispy chilled wine. So far, so good October!

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Get your “green” on….Eat more Kale, y’all.