One of the things I love most about this time of year is Strawberry Shortcake.  Of course my mom made the best strawberry shortcake.  She used biscuits and filled with them crushed berries and whipped cream, or ice cream, depending on what she had ready to hand. You can find that recipe here.  Its not low fat or low sugar, but it is high on deliciousness!

As a diabetic, I am always looking for ways to lighten things up and hopefully still keep them delicious.   I got a book from Gooseberry Patch a number of months back called Comfort Food, Lightened Up.  It’s filled with 330 recipes of your favourite foods, made healthier and lighter.

We grow our own strawberries and they are coming fast and furious at the moment.  It is a race to see who will get to them first, us, or the birds  . . .  or the slugs.  Meh!  Everyone’s got to eat I guess!

When I saw this recipe for a lightened up version for Strawberry Shortcake, I really wanted to try it out. It didn’t use the biscuits my mother always used, but it did include a delicious low fat and sugar sponge.  It sounded quite promising!

I had some sour milk in the refrigerator left from when we were on our holiday and so I used that instead of regular milk, adapting the recipe to do so.  The cake worked out beautifully and is light and moist . . .  not very sweet, but you can’t have it all.

If I could choose to do anything differently it would be to crush the berries lightly instead of just slicing them.  I think crushed berries would be even nicer.

No, it did not compare to my mothers . . .  not in the least, but it was still very good.  And I won’t complain about that!

So, if you are looking for a cake that you can have and eat too, then this might be the one.  The cake on its own would be lovely split and filled with whipped cream and lemon curd . . .  just saying.  It’s a great basic cake.

I am sitting here imagining it split and filled with all sorts . . .  crushed raspberries, peaches . . . rhubarb compote!  Mmmm . . .


*Lighter Strawberry Shortcake*

Makes 12 servings


A lighter version of an old favourite with less fat and sugar in the cake than a regular recipe.  I developed it to use up some sour milk, but if you don’t have sour milk, you can use regular milk. Just leave out the baking soda.  With light whipped topping, one serving of this will only be about 157 calories.  And it’s delicious. You can’t complain about that! 

60g butter, softened (1/4 cup)

95g white sugar (1/2 cup)

1 large free range egg, beaten

280g of plain flour

4 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda, leave out if using regular milk)

225ml sour milk (can use regular milk, 1 cup)

2 tsp vanilla extract

605g of fresh strawberries (4 cups) 

to serve:

light whipped topping

icing sugar to dust 

Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4.  Spray a 13 X 9 inch baking tin with some low fat non-stick baking spray. Set aside. 

Cream together the sugar and butter until combined and fluffy.  Beat in the egg and vanilla.  Sift together the plain flour, baking powder, soda and salt.  Add to the creamed mixture alternately with the sour milk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture.  Spread the batter into the prepared pan.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown, risen and the top springs back when lightly touched.

Hull and slice the berries. 

Cool completely before serving.  To serve cut into squares and split.  Place the bottom halves on serving plates. Top each with some of the prepared berries and 1 TBS of light topping.  Place the top of the cake squares on top.  Garnish with another TBS of lilght topping and some more sliced berries.  Dust with icing sugar and serve immediately.

Do I miss the old version . . .  my mum’s . . .  yes, I probably always will, but its nice to know that there is a lighter lower fat version I could indulge in every now and then.  I suppose you could also use a sweetener in this that measures like for like the same as sugar in the place of the sugar and that would work too.  This did satisfy a craving of sorts . . . sigh  . . .  Bon Appetit!

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