Shortcake Lab With Cheater Chef

I'm a pretty advanced home cook. I often make things that require straining through cheesecloth on a regular weekday so you would think that I would know everything there is to know about making shortcakes.  Oh, no I don't!  Mindy Merrell and R.B Quinn of Cheater Chef were about to show me just how little I knew. Mindy has a degree in home ec and has worked in test kitchens and has written cookbooks. She can whip up a batch of biscuits faster than you can say, "Pass the gravy."

Mindy Merrell Cheater Chef

R.B. was an Eagle Scout so he can do pretty much anything as long as he has a piece of rope and some flint.

R.B Quinn Cheater Chef

The Cheaters assembled the Lab attendees in the Downtown Nashville Farmers Market and gave us in-depth info on self-rising flour and different fats and liquids.

I'm not kidding about the in-depth part.  The Shortcake Lab Manual they gave us was 12 pages long!

There was no way I was going to leave without learning something.  Like out of all the self-rising flours they had, only King Arthur didn't have aluminum.

One of the great things Mindy demonstrated was the use of a pastry cloth.

I've already ordered mine!

People in the Lab got to participate and the Middle Child decided (with a little prodding) to try her hand at it.

I have to say I was quite proud.

Her chocolate chip shortcakes turned out great!

They ended up being the most decadent version.

They did a brunchy take on the shortcake, topping it with apples and sausage. I added ricotta with orange zest.

This one with bananas and a caramel sauce Mindy whipped up in about 2 minutes.  I was impressed because caramel sauce makes me panic. That girl can flat cook!

These were made with a super wet dough that was formed into balls and rolled in flour before baking. I've never seen a recipe like it. Oh, and they poured like a stick of melted butter over them so they came close to being my favorite.

They even made little muffin versions.

After a while, my plate was looking a bit like a dog's breakfast with all the shortcake carnage.

Our brains and bellies were full up!

Mindy and R.B. made a super informative and fun evening.  I can't wait to try all these out this summer and go to another one of their labs.  Past classes have been a cornbread lab and a biscuit lab.

To learn more about the Cheater Chef and to get more recipes, visit their site.