Private chef Kaity Farrell puts her own twist on an old-fashioned American classic with her Semolina Lilac Strawberry Shortcake.
An old-fashioned American classic with a new twist! The addition of semolina flour makes this shortcake oh so tender! Fill them with fresh seasonal berries or stone fruits and a healthy dollop of whipped coconut cream for the perfect summer dessert.
Serves 8 | Prep 25 mins | Cook 20 mins | Total 45 mins
Lilac Semolina Shortcakes
• 1-1/2 cup all-purpose flour
• 1/2 cup semolina flour
• 1/4 cup granulated sugar
• 1 tablespoon baking powder
• 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
• 1/2 cup vegan butter alternative
• 1/2 cup fresh lilac blossoms (optional) plus more for garnish
• 2/3 cup + 2 tablespoons full fat coconut milk (plus more for brushing biscuits)
• 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
• 2 tablespoons violet sugar (or more granulated sugar)
Whipped Coconut Cream
• 2 cans of full fat coconut milk, chilled overnight
• 2 tablespoons sugar
• 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean powder or seeds scraped from 1 vanilla bean
1. Preheat oven 425˚F.
2. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
3. In a medium-sized mixing bowl stir together flours, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
4. Cut butter into small cubes. Cut butter into flour mixture using your fingertips or a pastry cutter until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs with some pea-sized bits. If adding lilac flowers, stir them into mixture with a fork.
5. Add vinegar to coconut milk and stir to thicken. Pour coconut milk mixture into flour mixture and stir to form dough. Finish combining dough by hand until it comes together. Be gentle and don’t over-mix.
6. Turn dough out onto a floured surface and roll out to 1/2” thickness.
7. Cut out shortcakes using a round biscuit cutter or drinking glass and transfer rounds to baking sheet so that they almost touch each other. Gently rework scraps and cut out more shortcakes until all of dough is used up.
8. Brush tops of shortcakes with more coconut milk and sprinkle with the violet sugar you made during violet season (recipe in the blog archives) or use more granulated sugar.
9. Bake shortcakes on center rack for 15-20 minutes until they are light golden brown.
10. Remove sheet pan from oven and transfer shortcakes to a cooling rack using a spatula. Cool shortcakes to room temperature before serving.
11. Prepare strawberries by removing the leaves and stems and quartering them. Mix them together with the maple syrup, lemon, vanilla extract and liquor if using. Let them sit for 10 minutes to macerate in their juices.
12. To make whipped coconut cream scoop out coconut cream from chilled cans of coconut milk. Add sugar and vanilla bean and whip in a handheld or stand mixer until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Tip: Chill bowl and beater(s) first to help keep the cream cold during whipping.
13. To assemble shortcakes, split them with a fork (like you do with English muffins). Spoon macerated berries and juice onto bottom half of shortcake. Dollop on whipped coconut cream. Place top of shortcake on whipped cream. Sprinkle with lilac flowers to garnish. Serve right away. Enjoy!
• Shortcake is best eaten the day it’s made. The shortcakes themselves will keep in an airtight container at room temp for a few days.
• Replace strawberries with other seasonal berries and stone fruits throughout the summer. Replace lilacs with other edible flowers like roses for example. Make sure any edible flowers you use are not sprayed and avoid harvesting from roadways because of spraying and chemically polluted water runoff from the roads.
Kaity Farrell is a private chef, recipe developer, photographer and food stylist based on Nantucket. Explore Kaity’s recipes and more of her delicious creations on her website fareisle.com and on Instagram at @FareIsle.