Most people will tell you that you must serve a sweet or sparkling wine with dessert. Well, I don’t think that is always true.
Recently, I paired a very nice, high end Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley with dessert. I love the idea of fruit desserts with wine, and Napa Cabs are so big in their own right they can stand up to the sweetness. My Blackberry Balsamic Shortcakes with Mascarpone Whipped Cream aren’t overly sweet and the blackberry and balsamic vinegar pair wonderfully with the wine.
- 2 pounds blackberries (frozen is fine)
- 1 1/3 cup sugar
- ½ cup balsamic vinegar
- 2 cups flour
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ a stick of chilled butter cut into small cubes.
- ¾-1 cup buttermilk
- 1 8 ounce container mascarpone
- ½ cup heavy cream
- Aged Balsamic vinegar (get the good stuff)
- Combine the berries, sugar and vinegar together in a large pot. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat, as it cooks break up some of the berries, I like to keep some whole berries in the jam. Continue to simmer for 30 minutes; the mixture will reduce down. Once cooled, store in the fridge which will help thicken it more to become more jam like.
- Sift together the dry ingredients and then with your fingers press the butter into the flour mixture. Work the butter in till you have a sandy mixture. Then stir in the buttermilk, enough to bring it all together.
- Lightly flour your work surface and hands and then pour out the dough onto the surface. Knead the dough to bring it all together and fold it over it’s self a few times, this helps give you flaky high shortcakes.
- Pat out the dough to ½ inch thick and then with whatever size biscuit cutter you desire cut out your shortcakes. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake for 14-15 minutes until golden. Let cool.
- In the bowl of a mixer whip the cream until you get soft peaks. Add in the mascarpone and whip together.
- Slice shortcake in half, spoon some of the jam on the bottom, add a dollop of the mascarpone cream, top with other half of shortcake. Drizzle whole plate and shortcake with a good, aged balsamic vinegar.