I wish I could say this surplus of strawberries came from our garden, but even though the plants I put in the ground last fall have grown well and are producing runners like crazy, we’ve only gotten a few fruits from them so far–small but very sweet. So until next year, when the home harvest should be quite a bit bigger, we’re relying on our local berry farm.
Last week, we went by and picked up three quarts of strawberries, not enough for making jam–which we plan to do later–just enough for fresh eating. Well, it turns out that even with five people in the house this weekend, three quarts was way more fresh eating than we could handle! So what to do with all these beautiful berries before they go bad? Below, you’ll find a couple of my solutions: strawberry cake and strawberry muffins. Hope you have some berries in your neck of the woods!
In a medium bowl, sift together 2 C. flour, 1 tsp. baking powder, 1/2 tsp. baking soda, and 1/2 tsp. salt.
In a large bowl, beat 2 eggs and 1-1/3 C. sugar until fluffy. To this, add 1/2 C. butter (melted), 1-1/2 tsp. vanilla, 3/4 C. mashed strawberries (I use a potato masher), and 2/3 C. buttermilk. Mix until just combined. Slowly add the dry ingredients, again mixing just until combined.
Bake in a greased 9″ x 13″ cake pan at 350°F for 29 minutes. When cool, ice with the recipe below and top with sliced strawberries!
Cream Cheese Frosting
Soften 1/2 C. of butter and 8 oz. of cream cheese by leaving on the counter for an hour or so. Then beat together until creamy. Add 1 tsp. vanilla and 2 T. milk. Add confectioners’ sugar little by little, beating in between, until the icing achieves the consistency you want. (I think I add about 2 cups total–half of a 1-lb. box–but I never measure…)
In a mixing bowl, combine 1 C. well mashed strawberries (again, I use a potato masher), 2 eggs, 2/3 C. sugar, 2/3 C. milk, 1/2 C. vegetable oil, and 1/4 tsp. almond extract. When these are well combined, add 2 C. flour, 1 T. baking powder, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. nutmeg. Mix these dry ingredients briefly with each other (right there in the same bowl, where they’re sitting on top of the wet mixture) before incorporating into the rest of the batter.
Bake in 12 greased muffin cups (they’ll be almost full) 15 minutes at 400°F.