Left: Courtesy Jenny Keller; Right: Courtesy Elizabeth Messina
Here’s a simple idea to borrow for your next outdoor bash: strawberry everything.
Tiffani Thiessen threw a birthday party for now 4-year-old daughter Harper on Sunday and the dessert table was loaded with strawberry sweets, from shortcake to pie.
“An amazing day for my sweet strawberry loving 4 year old. #harpers4th,” Thiessen captioned this Instagram photo.
Seattle baker Jenny Keller of Jenny Cookies, who has flown to L.A. to bake for Harper’s last three birthday celebrations, says that the afternoon “was a beautiful party.” And how could it not be, with this many desserts to dig into?
On the menu: red velvet cake pops and sugar cookies in the shape of strawberries, strawberry jam jars emblazoned with the number 4, mini strawberry shortcakes in mason jars, mini strawberry pies, red velvet cupcakes, vanilla cupcakes and a “naked” white cake adorned with fresh flowers.
Naked cake? Yup — there was enough buttercream icing between the layers that a full coat of frosting would have been overload, so Keller simply dusted the cake in powdered sugar. The result: a stunning tiered cake with just the right amount of sweetness in every bite.
The baker did have to stray from the strawberry theme to accommodate one in-demand dessert: “Everybody’s favorite dessert, but specifically Tiffani’s, are these peanut butter crackers that I do,” she tells PEOPLE. “It’s two crackers, like Ritz crackers, with peanut butter in the middle, and you dip the whole thing in white chocolate. They’re the most simple thing and anybody could make them, but they’re so good.”
Any home baker can also whip up the mini strawberry shortcakes, made in mason jars tied with cheerful red gingham kerchiefs. They’re featured in Keller’s new book, Eat More Dessert. Get the recipe below — we promise it’s berry good!
Strawberry Shortcakes in a Jar
6 cups fresh strawberries, rinsed and sliced
⅔ cup plus 6 tbsp. sugar
4⅔ cup baking mix (like Bisquick)
1 cup whole milk
6 tbsp. butter or margarine, melted
12-14 canning jars
16-oz. container whipped topping or whipped cream, for garnish
1. Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C).
2. Place the strawberries in a large bowl and mix with ⅔ cup of the sugar. Set aside.
3. In another large bowl, combine the baking mix, milk, melted butter, and remaining sugar until a soft dough forms. Using an ice cream scoop, scoop the batter onto an ungreased cookie sheet.
4. Bake for 9-10 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove the pan from the oven and place on a wire cooling rack until completely cool.
5. When ready to serve, place one shortcake biscuit in the bottom of each canning jar. Top with sliced strawberries, and garnish with whipped cream.