Oh these sweet sweet days!
When the coals are hot, the hot dogs are pleasantly burnt, the beers are canned and cozied, and the cheeseburgers are a little too well done with too much cheese. With sunshine, it’s all perfect… we’re just hoping hoping to put these rainy New Orleans days to bed soon. These are grilling days, once the sunshine breaks through and we’ve got to live them all the way before they escape us.
This Strawberry Shortcake… (I’m a big fan, remember this Basil Cream Strawberry Shortcake?) uses a dense pound cake and the last of the grill’s heat to toast both cake and strawberries. Topped with sweet cream and served warm… this is us, living our best summer selves with cake lots of cake.
We’re going to start by making a pound cake.
Not just any pound cake, my absolute favorite pound cake.
A pound cake typically gets its name from the generous amount of butter inside. A pound. A whole dang pound!
This cake has aaaallllmost a pound of fat in it, but we’re dividing it between butter and rich cream cheese. Eggs, too! Lots of luscious eggs.
All of this glorious (I mean that) fat will bake up into a perfectly moist loaf that, even after baking and grilling, will be tender and soft. Thank you, fat! Thank you!
Butter and cream cheese is whipped to creamy with granulated sugar.
Creaming the mixture will aerate it, creating a light and fluffy pound cake texture. We’re not just mixing ingredients, we’re creating texture.
Eggs are important.They’ll add a richness to the batter and help the batter rise.
The eggs are beaten in, one at a time, for 1 minute each. Slow and steady to incorporate and aerate. Since we’re working with so much fat, we’re using the power of the mixer and the power of eggs to create lightness within the loaf.
Flour, salt, and leavening are folded into the batter making it thick, but still spoonable.
A 9×5-inch loaf pan is lined with Reynolds Wrap Nonstick Foil. We want to make sure that the moist and dense pound cake moves easily from the loaf pan, sliced, and to the grill without any hiccups.
While the cake bakes and rests, it’s time to sort the strawberries.
Fresh and sliced, tossed with granulated sugar to macerate.
Macerating berries in sugar helps draw the sweet juices from the fruit and softens the berries, helping make them downright irresistible when heated on a grill.
Baked to beautifully golden. Cooled to room temperature. We’ll chill the cake to cool, making it easier to slice and much easier to grill and hold its shape without breaking.
It’s my hope that you had the grill going for hot dogs and cheese burgers, and this pound cake is the grand finale.
Thick slices of pound cake are placed on a hot grill. Macerated strawberries are placed in Reynolds Foil Baking Cups and toasted alongside the pound cake. Cake slices are flipped using a thin spatula. Warmed and grill toasted. This is all so so good!
Gather right round!
All we need is sweetened whipped cream and we’re on our way to summer shortcake heaven!
The pound cake is buttery and dense. Dense, in the most alluring and tender way. Topped with sweet warmed strawberries and cool sweet cream. The best way to celebrate the last of these good good summer days, and the last heat of that bbq coals. Living out summer food lives all the way, all the way!
For the Pound Cake
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
- 1 ½ sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
For the Strawberries
- 1 1/2 pounds fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
For the Cream
- 1 ½ cups heavy cream
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- PREHEAT oven to 325 degrees F and place a rack in the center of the oven. Line a 9×5-inch baking pan with Reynolds Wrap® Non-Stick Foil and set aside.
- WHISK together flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- CREAM together softened butter and cream cheese in the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Stop the mixer occasionally to scrape down the bowl and make sure that the butter and cream cheese are evenly mixed. Add the sugar to the butter and cream cheese mixture, and beat on medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 3 minutes.
- BEAT in one egg at a time, mixing for one minute after each addition. Stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Beat in vanilla extract.
- ADD dry ingredients all at once. Beat on low speed until dry ingredients are completely incorporated. Spoon batter into prepared pan. Bake for 50-60 minutes, rotating once or twice during baking. Bake until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, or with just a few crumbs. Allow cake to cool in the pan for 15 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool to room temperature. I find the pound cake is easiest to work with when chilled through, so wrap the cooled cake and refrigerate for 4 hours, or overnight.
- SLICE the chilled pound cake into 8 thick slices.
- TOSS the strawberries together with the sugar in a small bowl. Allow to rest at room temperature for 20 minutes.
- WHIP the heavy cream with powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla until soft peaks form. Set aside.
- GRILL the slices on pound cake over a warm , greased, grill until golden brown grill marks appear on both sides of cake, flipping once.
- WARM the strawberries on the grill by spooning strawberries among 8 Jumbo Reynolds® Aluminum Foil Baking Cups and warming along side the pound cake.
- SERVE warm pound cake slices with warmed strawberries and sweet cream.
- Serving Size: 6
Photos by Jon Melendez.