Friday, May 29, 2009

Gluten Free Almond Shortcakes with Fresh Strawberies and Vanilla Cream

This recipe is a variation on the regular strawberry shortcakes that are typically served with whipped cream. I add almond extract to the batter, real vanilla beans to the cream and the rest is just magic. These are so beautiful to look at but taste even better. Thanks to the Trader Joe's Gluten Free Pancake and Waffle mix they are a cinch to prepare.

1 bag TJ Gluten Free Pancake Mix
2 eggs beaten
1/2 c white granulated sugar
1 1/2 Tbsp Almond Extract
1/2 c canola oil
3/4 c. milk
1/2 pkg Vanilla pudding powder

Combine all of the above in a large mixing bowland mix until it is a smooth batter. Prepare the cake pans by spraying generously with Pam. Pour batter 3/4 full and bake at 350 until they spring back on top and a tooth pick comes out clean. Cool completelyon wire racks while you prep the vanilla cream and strawberries.

2 cups cold milk
8 ounces softened cream cheese
1 package vanilla pudding mix plus other half from above
one vanilla bean scraped of the seeds

Combine and cream all of the above except the beans. When the pudding completely blendedadd scraped vanilla beans and stir to mix in. Let Chill wrapped with plastic wrap on top.

Assemble the cakes by filling the centerwith the vanilla cream. You can layer this if you make a sheet pan or round cake as an alternative to the individual cakes. Decorate with generous amounts of the berries and a dollop of whipped cream and mint leaf as a garnish. This tastes too good to be gluten free because the pudding makes it so moist and the almond extract makes it really flavorful. Happy Summer!

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