The first time I made this recipe this year, I don't think I used enough strawberries or had enough cream. It really needs a generous amount of each to balance out the shortcake. And since it is much better the first day it is made, you may as well finish off that last piece tonight.
25 minutes preparation time, plus time for the strawberries to sit
15 minutes baking time
For the shortcake:
2 cups unbleached white flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
5 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces
2/3 cup milk
For the strawberries:
3 pints of strawberries, rinsed, trimmed, and larger berries cut in halves or quarters
1/4 cup sugar
For the cream mixture:
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1/3 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 425 degrees and butter and flour an 8-inch round cake pan.
To make the shortcake, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar in a large bowl Mix in the butter with your fingers, mashing it into the flour until the mixture is the texture of coarse cornmeal. Slowly stir in the milk a bit at a time, using just enough to get the mixture to hold together. Knead the dough for about a minute. Press it into the cake pan, pushing it gently up to the sides of the pan. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, just until the cake turns a pale gold color.
Let the cake cool in the pan for a few minutes before turning it onto a cooling rack. When it is still warm, but cool enough to handle, split it horizontally with a large knife. Carefully remove the top with the knife and a spatula.
About an hour before you are ready to serve the cake, gently mash the strawberries with the sugar. The strawberries should be mashed enough to release some of their juices, but still maintain their shape. Let the mixture sit for about an hour.
To make the cream mixture, whip the heavy cream, sour cream, sugar, and vanilla together until it is the texture of whipped cream.
To assemble the cake, place the bottom of the shortcake on a platter. Spoon the strawberry mixture on top, and then layer on the whipped cream. Gently place the cake top on the whipped cream. Slice with a sharp knife.