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Polenta Shortcakes with Strawberries
and Limoncello Whipped Cream

(Makes 6)
Polenta Shortcakes with Strawberries
and Limoncello Whipped Cream

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup instant polenta or yellow cornmeal
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch of salt
Grated zest of 1 lemon
5 tablespoons cold butter, cut into cubes
1/2 cup buttermilk plus extra for brushing tops
Turbinado or coarse suger for sprinkling
Confectioners' sugar for dusting

2 cups sliced strawberries
2 tablespoons sugar

Limoncello Whipped Cream:
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon Limoncello


To make the shortcakes:
In a medium bowl, combine the flour, polenta, 1/4 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and lemon zest. Using a pastry blender, cut the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.  Add the buttermilk to the mixture; stir until the dough comes together.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Drop the dough into 6 mounds on a large ungreased baking sheet. 
Brush the tops of each with some buttermilk and sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Bake for 15 - 18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  The shortcakes should not be too brown. Transfer the cakes to a wire rack to cool.

For the strawberries:
Combine the sliced strawberries and 2 tablespoons of sugar in a bowl.
Set aside or refrigerate until ready to serve.

To make the Limoncello cream:
Beat the heavy cream with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until thickened.  Add the confectioners' sugar and Limoncello and beat until soft peaks form.

To serve:
Cut each shortcake in half. Place the bottom halves on individual serving plates.  Spoon on some of the strawberries and a dollop of the whipped cream.
Place the top halves of the shortcakes on the cream.  Dust the shortcakes with confectioners' sugar and serve.
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The polenta adds a pleasing crunch to these shortcakes topped with the juicy strawberries and spirited, lemony whipped cream.
Homemade Limoncello
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