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Red, White and Blue Shortcake


Independence Day, the 4th of July, is truly the All-American holiday! Red, white and blue, the colors of our flag, will be all around us as we celebrate with fireworks, parades, fairs, sports, family BBQs and picnics.

In the USA, this federal holiday commemorates the Declaration of Independence by the Second Continental Congress on July 4th 1776 making the original thirteen colonies no longer subjects of Britain.

The 13 gun salute originated in Bristol, Rhode Island on July 4th 1777 as a tribute to the original thirteen colonies, a tradition which continues still.

In 1870, the United States Congress made July 4th an unpaid holiday for federal workers. And in 1938 Congress made July 4th an official paid holiday for all non-essential federal employees.

Thanks to our brave ancestors who fought to obtain our freedom and to the generations thereafter who did the same to maintain it.

The Star-Spangled Banner, our national anthem, God Bless America most famously Kate Smith’s rendition at baseball games, America the Beautiful and more patriotic music will resound in the hills and dales and skyscraper canyons around the country.

The red, white and blue theme gives this common dessert a patriotic twist. Blueberries, raspberries, a sweet cake and whipped cream come together with maple syrup, an All-American sweetener, very familiar if not a staple, in early American households.



For the cakes:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1/4 cup fine cornmeal

  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar

  • 1 tablespoon baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 tablespoon candied ginger, finely minced

  • 1 rounded teaspoon lemon zest

  • 3/4 cup heavy cream, room temperature

  • 1 stick unsalted butter, cut in 1/2 inch cubes

  • 1 extra large egg

For the berries:

  • 1 pound fresh blueberries, washed and sorted

  • 12 ounces fresh raspberries

  • 2/3 cup maple syrup

For the whipped cream:

  • 2 cups heavy cream

  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar

  • a few drops of vanilla extract


  • preheat oven to 425 degrees F

  • lightly grease a six medium/large compartment muffin tin

  • put the dry ingredients, including the zest and the ginger, in the bowl of a food processor. Evenly distribute the butter cubes and pulse a few times until the contents look about like a coarse meal.

  • in a separate bowl, whisk together the cream and the egg, then add the dry ingredients to the bowl and gently mix with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon just until the dry ingredients are moistened.

  • divide the batter evenly into the muffin tin

  • bake in the preheated oven for 15 to 18 minutes or until the top springs back when lightly pressed

  • remove to a cooling rack until needed. When cool, the cakes may be kept in a tightly sealed container for a few days if needed.

  • gently fold the berries in a bowl with the maple syrup and set aside for a half hour or more

  • whip the heavy cream with the powdered sugar and vanilla until it begins to mound

To serve:

  • split the cakes horizontally and place the bottoms on each of six plates

  • divide the berry mixture over the cake bottoms

  • spoon some whipped cream over the berries

  • place the top of the cakes over the whipped cream and spoon more of the cream around the plate as you wish.

These are ample servings but it’s a celebration… Enjoy!