My mother loved serving our family strawberry shortcake after dinner on Sundays in the summer. Although hers wasn't chocolate we loved it anyway (my siblings share my passion for chocolate). It is probably a good thing she didn't have this chocolate short cake recipe—she may never have gotten rid of us.
Chocolate Drop Shortcakes will keep for 3 to 4 days at room temperature in a tightly sealed plastic container. The shortcakes come to life when served warm; just pop them in a 275-degree-Fahrenheit oven for 3 lo 4 minutes. Before serving, use a serrated knife to cut the shortcakes in half horizontally.
Strawberries are delicious with this recipe. But if you really want to indulge, use raspberries instead and serve with lots of whipped cream. The shortcakes are also great with ice cream.
Yields 2 dozen 2-1/2-inch biscuits
Measuring cups, measuring spoons, 1-1/2 quart saucepan, 4-quart bowl, instant-read test thermometer, plastic wrap, sifter, 7-quart bowl, fork, rubber spatula, 2 nonstick baking sheets, plastic cookie storage container with lid
Make the Chocolate Drop Shortcakes
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Heat the milk and the granulated sugar in a 1-1/2 quart saucepan over medium-high heat. When hot, stir to dissolve the sugar. Bring to a boil. Immediately remove from the heat and transfer to a 4-quart bowl. Cool in an ice-water bath to a temperature of 40 to 45 degrees Fahrenheit. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until needed.
In a sifter combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Sift into a 7-quart bowl. Add the butter. Use a fork to "cut" the butter into the sifted flour mixture until the mixture develops a mealy texture. Add the chocolate mini-morsels and use a rubber spatula to mix until combined. Add the chilled milk mixture and mix with the spatula until the dough comes together.
Using a heaping tablespoon of dough (approximately 1-1/2 ounces) per shortcake, portion 12 shortcakes, evenly spaced, onto each of 2 nonstick baking sheets. Place the baking sheets on the center rack of the preheated oven and bake for 12 minutes. Remove the shortcakes from the oven and cool at room temperature for 10 minutes. Serve the warm shortcakes immediately, or cool completely and store in a tightly sealed plastic container.
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