2 lbs strawberries, cleaned and hulled
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
4 Tbs chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 tsp raw or Demerara sugar
1 cup half and half
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbs raw or Demerara sugar
2 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1/2 cup chilled heavy or whipping cream
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp powdered sugar
1 Tbs baking powder
Preheat the oven to 250 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Place the whole strawberries, tips up, on the baking sheet – it’s ok if they crowd in, as long as they’re in one layer – and bake for 30 minutes.
Remove the strawberries, sprinkle evenly with the vinegar, sugar, and black pepper, and return to the oven for 30 more minutes.
The strawberries can be made a day in advance and refrigerated with their juices in a clean, airtight container. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Make the biscuits: Raise the temperature of the oven to 375° and line a clean baking sheet with parchment paper.
Pulse the flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt in a food processor for 5 seconds until sifted and incorporated. Add the butter and pulse on and off in three-second bursts about 5 or 6 times, until the flour is the texture of moist cornmeal.
Reserve 1 tablespoon of the half and half in a small bowl. With the food processor running, pour the remaining half and half through the feed tube into the flour and process just until a sticky dough forms.
Turn the dough out onto a clean, floured work surface and pat gently into a 1/2 inch-thick round. Cut the dough into 8 biscuits with a 3-inch cookie or biscuit cutter, gathering the scraps and patting together as needed.
Place the biscuits on the prepared baking sheet, brush the tops with the reserved half and half, and sprinkle with the raw sugar.
Bake for about 20 minutes, just until the biscuits are pale golden. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for 10 minutes.
While the biscuits cool, make the whipped cream: Whisk the cream and powdered sugar together with an electric hand mixer on high speed until soft peaks form, about 2 minutes.
Assemble the shortcakes by splitting a biscuit in half, then topping with strawberries and a dollop of whipped cream.