Shortcake Biscuits with Berries


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Want to brighten up your winter meals? Treat yourself and your sweetheart to some berries this winter! Most desserts are weighted down with excess calories and saturated fat. But the right dessert can be full of health benefits. Unlike store-bought versions, this homemade valentine dessert has whole-wheat flour and canola oil replacing some of the refined flour and butter. The strawberries, blueberries and whole-wheat flour deliver a load of fiber, antioxidants and phytochemicals to this healthful, scrumptious treat.

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  • Canola oil spray
  • 1 1/2 C. unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 C. whole-wheat or whole-wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 4 tsp. baking powder
  • 3-4 Tbs. sugar for the biscuits, plus more for the berries, according to taste
  • 2 Tbs. butter, softened
  • 4 Tbs. canola oil
  • 1 C. fat-free (skim) milk
  • 1 lb. fresh strawberries (see note)
  • 1 pt. fresh blueberries or 2 C. frozen blueberries, thawed
  • 1/4 C. orange juice
  • 1 1/2 C. vanilla frozen yogurt, softened slightly (optional)

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Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Spray a nonstick cookie sheet with canola oil spray and set it aside. With a paring knife take the stems off of the strawberries and slice them into a bowl. Add the fresh blueberries and mix in the orange juice and sugar to taste. Set it aside for about 30-60 minutes. (If you're using frozen blueberries that have been defrosted, stir them in at the end of this recipe, just before assembling the shortcakes.)

In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, salt, baking powder and sugar. Using a pastry blender or a fork, cut the butter and oil into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse bread crumbs. Add the milk all at once. Stir until the milk is mixed in and there are no lumps. Form 8 well- rounded biscuits. Using a large spoon, scoop up a 1/4 C. of the dough and drop it onto the cookie sheet. (You may need to use a teaspoon to scrape the dough off the spoon.)

Bake the biscuits for 15-20 minutes. (Use a toothpick to test the centers). When they are done, cool on a wire rack. Use a serrated knife to gently slice off the top third of each biscuit. (Add the defrosted frozen blueberries at this point.)Top the bottom half of the biscuit with some berries and juice. Lay the top third of the biscuit on top of the berries.

Top it with more berries and juice. Place the remaining berries around each biscuit. Garnish each biscuit with frozen yogurt, if desired, and indulge.

Yield: 8 servings

Note: If you cannot find fresh strawberries, use frozen peaches that have been thawed or fresh mango slices.

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