Strawberry Shortcake Iowa-Style

For Iowans, the first shortcake of the season is always with hot biscuits, always with mashed berries, always with cream and most importantly, not dessert but "dinner".

Strawberry Shortcake Iowa-Style

When the first ripe-as-jewel local strawberries become available, the family script for shortcake is fixed.

Shortcake is supper, nothing else. We are allowed – no, expected – to gorge. Diet protestations are futile. Failure to indulge has serious consequence: no return invitation.

The first of two acts is Iowa Shortcake, hot biscuits doused with mashed berries and cream, lots of berries, lots of cream.

The second act is – hhmmmm. Feast on this, then we’ll talk. If you’re worthy.

IOWA SHORTCAKE Gently mash a half-cup sugar into a quart of bite-size berries: perfect, home-grown strawberries are traditional but blueberries, blackberries and others are extraordinary. Let rest at room temperature for 2 – 3 hours, pressing occasionally. Stir in a second quart of berries just before serving. To serve, place the bottom half of a hot biscuit in a bowl and spread with butter. Cover with a generous portion of berries, then the top half of the biscuit. Pour half-and-half (or even cream) over the biscuit. Keep half-and-half available for adding more as it soaks into the berries and biscuit.

ALANNA's TIPS For air-light results with any baked good, stir flour before measuring. For something as delicate as biscuits, better yet, weigh the flour. For this recipe, use nine ounces. One year, I forgot the baking soda, no problem, so long as the baking powder is fresh. On-hand substitutions: Substitute sweet milk or buttermilk for the yogurt; if sweet milk but add an extra teaspoon of baking powder. Substitute whole yogurt for non-fat yogurt but use 5 tablespoons butter. The sharp edges of a biscuit cutter will encourage taller, lighter biscuits but a glass or used tuna can works in a pinch.
Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Do you have a favorite recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. Never miss a recipe! If you like this recipe, sign up for a free e-mail subscription. If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. Follow Kitchen Parade on Facebook!


Hands-on time: 15 minutes
Time to table: 25 minutes
Serves 8
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour fluffed to aerate before measuring or 250g
  • 1 scant teaspoon table salt
  • 1 tablespoon (yes, tablespoon) baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 6 tablespoons cold butter (leave in fridge until needed)
  • 1 scant cup non-fat yogurt

Preheat oven to 450F. Lightly butter a baking sheet.

Stir the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda in a large bowl. (Hints: While the flour's out, keep it handy for later. Have the yogurt ready before proceeding too because from here on, work quickly, for the colder the butter when the biscuits reach the oven, the better the ‘crumb’, that's the biscuit-perfect texture.)

Dice butter. (To dice, cut stick into fourths lengthwise. Turn, repeat. Then cut crosswise.) With both hands, work the butter into the flour mixture with your fingertips until coarsely, not finely, mixed.

Gently stir in the yogurt. Form into a sticky ball, turn onto lightly floured surface. Gently knead about 10 times. (Add flour if you must but the more flour, the heavier the biscuits.)

Press dough about one inch thick. Cut into rounds with a biscuit cutter, transfer to the baking sheet. Reshape leftover dough and cut additional biscuits. (Cut as many as possible the first time for those biscuits will be more tender.)

Bake immediately for 7 – 9 minutes or until tall and golden. Alternatively, freeze biscuits for 30 – 60 minutes before baking but the biscuits won’t be quite so light.

NUTRITION ESTIMATE Per biscuit: 201 Calories; 9g Tot Fat; 26g Carb; 1g Fiber; 615 mg Sodium; 23 mg Cholesterol; 4g Protein. Weight Watchers Old Points 4.5, PointsPlus 5

A Family Tradition

The son of Iowans, my nephew Alex is a big fan of Strawberry Shortcake Iowa-Style, sweet biscuits with strawberries and cream. I believe that Alex is the fifth generation of Kelloggs to adore this early-summer tradition!

Tis Strawberry Season!

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Chocolate Cream Puffs Stuffed with Strawberries & Cream Strawberry Ice Cream Strawberry Banana Chocolate Crumble

Shop Your Pantry First

(helping home cooks save money on groceries)

Strawberry Ice Cream

Strawberry Ice Cream

Pretty in Pink, that’s how you might describe this STRAWBERRY ICE CREAM. Made without a cooked custard, it is the simplest – and prettiest! – ice cream recipe in my large collection.

What is so seductive about pink’s pale to passionate variations? When I close my eyes and think pink, I find color-etched images.

Last winter, two girls emerged from the grocery store with their mother. Their hot pink bellbottoms were topped by paler pink knitted ponchos, alike but not identical as the girls themselves were sisters not twins.

And then in April, there was the blushing pink of crabapple blossoms burst open overnight along my street.

And now, in summer, the cool, creamy pink of this dessert is added to my inner gallery, of pink.

ALANNA's TIPS If you like discernible chunks of fruit, reserve and roughly chop about a fourth of the berries, adding them during the last few minutes of processing. For a soft, lusciously creamy result, prepare the berry mixture in advance and refrigerate, then run the ice cream maker about 30 minutes before you want to serve.
Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Is something in your food repertoire piquantly pink? Share a recipe via e-mail.


Hands-on time: 15 minutes
Processing time: 20 – 30 minutes
Makes 6 cups
  • 1 pound fresh strawberries, cleaned and hulled or 16 ounces frozen strawberries, thawed
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup skim milk
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 8 ounces non-fat cream cheese, cut in 8 chunks
  • 1/2 cup cream

Place berries, sugar and lemon juice in blender and puree. (If there’s not enough liquid to puree, add a bit of the milk.) Add milk, salt and cream cheese and blend until smooth. Add cream and blend until just blended. Process in an ice cream maker until just thick. Best served immediately but can be frozen and served later.

NUTRITION ESTIMATE Per half cup: 91 Cal; 2g Tot Fat; 1g Sat Fat; 14g Carb; 1g Fiber; 174 mg Sodium; 11mg Cholesterol; Weight Watchers, Weight Watchers 2 points This recipe has been ‘Alanna-sized’ with reductions in fat, sugar and portion size and increases in nutrient-rich fruits and low-calorie flavorings.

More Recipes for Ice Cream & Sorbet

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Chameleon (Raspberry) Ice Cream Buttered Pecan Ice Cream with Pecan Meringue Cookies Rhubarb Sorbet
Explore all the recipes for ice cream and sorbet. If you like unusual ice creams, pay special attention to my recipe for Chameleon Ice Cream, a base recipe for many variations. It's lighter than most ice cream recipes, too, light enough for every day.

Do you have an ice cream maker? It's a great investment for about $50, a great gift too. I'm very pleased with my Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker and have used it several times a year since 2002. When visiting family and friends by car, I'll even tuck it into the trunk, making it extra easy to stir up a special dessert.

For St. Louisans: Many thanks to Christopher's in Kirkwood, the great gift shop right across from the Kirkwood farmers market, for the just-as-pretty-pink sherbet cups in the photo of the Strawberry Ice Cream -- and to Mother Nature for the pink-perfect roses that grace my garden in May and June.

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Chickpea & Chicken Salad Recipe

No more boring chicken salad! Notch up chicken salad with chickpeas, olives and Indian-style spices in a yogurt dressing. Hearty and delicious, this is definitely a 'savory' chicken salad.

Chickpea & Chicken Salad

The new food pyramid unveiled last spring by the U.S. Department of Agriculture offers, well, modest improvement. It does include daily exercise and emphasizes vegetables by separating them from fruit.

But (2014 update, now ChooseMyPlate) is filled with useful tips about food choices and portion sizes.

Vegetables are sorted into easy-to-remember groups (update, sorry this page is no longer supported) including green vegetables (broccoli, spinach, leafy greens), orange vegetables (carrots, sweet potatoes, squash) and starchy vegetables (corn, peas, potatoes).

Dried beans crop up twice, first with vegetables and then as a protein source under ‘meat and dried beans’.

Beans are a great meat extender, especially if your aim is to limit cholesterol and increase fiber.

Me, I’m happy to have an unusual mélange of flavors and textures that makes up easily, 'tastes' good to me and is good for 'me'.

ALANNA's TIPS For cooked chicken, use leftover grilled chicken breasts, leftover Fast Roast Chicken or my favorite, a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store. A whole rotisserie chicken usually yields exactly three cups of cooked chicken. If the yogurt is a little wet, drain it in a strainer first. When the entrée is virtuous, tempt you and your family with a dessert of what the USDA calls ‘discretionary calories’!


Hands-on time: 25 minutes
Time to table: about 2 hours
Makes 6 cups
  • 15 ounces canned chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
  • 1 cup (246g) non-fat yogurt
  • Zest & juice of a lemon or a lime
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seed or ground caraway
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon table salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped parsley
  • 1 cup (132g) good olives, pitted and halved
  • 3 cups (145g) cooked chicken, chopped
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Rinse chickpeas in running water and drain in colander. While chickpeas drain, mix all ingredients except chicken in large bowl. Add chicken and chickpeas and combine well. Taste, then season as needed with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate at least 90 minutes for flavors to meld.

NUTRITION ESTIMATE Per cup: 297 Calories; 31g Protein; 7g Tot Fat; 1g Sat Fat; 28g Carb; 7g Fiber; 555mg Sodium; 60mg Cholesterol; Weight Watchers 6 points

Ready for Some of Those 'Discretionary' Calories?

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Rhubarb Sorbet Peach Un-cobbler Iowa Strawberry Shortcake

More Chicken Salad Recipes

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Mango Chicken Salad Lemon Chive Chicken Salad Chicken Greek Salad
~ more cold suppers ~

~ more salad suppers ~
from A Veggie Venture, my food blog

Shop Your Pantry First

(helping home cooks save money on groceries)

Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences.
Do you have a favorite recipe with dried beans that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via
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