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Roasted Vanilla-Rhubarb Shortcakes

yield: 8 (3-inch) biscuits
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Special Equipment

  • a pastry blender
  • a 3-inch biscuit cutter

Ingredients

For the Sweet Shortcake Biscuits

  • 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 3/4 cup plus 1/2 teaspoon half-and-half
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 egg

For the Roasted Vanilla-Rhubarb Filling

    (makes around 5 heaping cups, enough for eight biscuits)

    • 2 lbs rhubarb, trimmed and sliced into 1-inch thick pieces
    • 1 cup granulated sugar
    • 1/2 cup red wine
    • 1 vanilla bean

    For the Vanilla Chantilly Cream

      (makes around 3 heaping cups, enough for eight biscuits)

      • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream, cold
      • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
      • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

      Instructions

      For the Sweet Shortcake Biscuits

      • In a large bowl, whisk together 2 1/3 cups flour, 1 tablespoon baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Add 1/2 cup cubed unsalted butter and, use a pastry blender to blend into the flour mixture until the flour forms a crumb-like consistency with no large lumps of butter.
      • Use a small glass to form a well in the center of the flour and butter mixture and pour in 3/4 cup plus 1/2 teaspoon milk. Use a wooden spoon to slowly mix the ingredients together, scooping the sides of the bowl over the milk in the center of the mixture until a dough forms. Be careful not to overmix the dough!
      • Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and fold it over itself a couple of times until it holds together — it'll seem like it's a little too crumbly at first, but have faith and just keep bringing it together. Pat out the dough unto a square that's about 1-inch thick. Use a 3-inch biscuit cutter to cut out 8 shortcakes — if using the offcuts, try not to overwork or overhandle the dough too much when reshaping. Place the 8 shortcakes on a baking pan and chill for 30 minutes, so that the dough holds it shape throughout the baking process.
      • Preheat the oven to 350 (F). In a small bowl, whisk 1 egg and use a pastry brush to brush the tops of each shortcake with the whipped egg. Sprinkle each with 1 teaspoon (from the 3 tablespoons) granulated sugar. Bake for approximately 15 to 20 minutes, or until the shortcake biscuits have risen slightly and are a golden brown color. Let cool on a wire rack and make the rhubarb filling, leaving the oven on at 350 (F).

      For the Roasted Vanilla-Rhubarb Filling

      • Preheat the oven to 350 (F) — if you're making the filling immediately after baking the shortcakes, your oven should already be ready.
      • Place 2 lbs rhubarb in a 9 x 13 inch baking pan. In a small bowl, whisk together 1 cup granulated sugar and 1/2 cup red wine — don't worry if it doesn't dissolve, it should just be a thick syrup. Drizzle over the rhubarb and toss to combine.
      • Split 1 vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape in seeds from the vanilla bean over the rhubarb mixture. Toss to combine and add the vanilla bean pods. Roast until rhubarb is very tender and the juices are syrupy, around 30 - 40 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack and discard vanilla bean pods. While the rhubarb is cooling, making the vanilla chantilly cream.

      For the Vanilla Chantilly Cream

      Putting It Together

      • In a small plate, combine 1 biscuit with rhubarb filling and vanilla chantilly cream. Serve warm.