In the pantry I found a lonely box of Jiffy corn muffin mix. I have a soft spot for Jiffy Mix. We had our rehearsal dinner at the Common Grill in Chelsea, Michigan and the Jiffy plant is right down the street in the same quaint little town.
In the fridge, or today I'll call it an ice box, I had a bunch of "going" Florida strawberries that I picked up a few days ago. I call it an ice box today because our breakfast, inspired by the corn muffin mix and strawberries has thoughts of my grandma, Dee, all over it.
Dee is notorious for her Strawberry Shortcake. She's even been known to serve it for dinner on hot summer nights! What makes Dee's shortcake special is that she always adds a little cornmeal to the mix. As she tells the story, adding the cornmeal as a happy accident. According to my mother and Aunt Sue, it was more likely creative substitution as she was trying to pull together a meal for a family of nine. Either way, the result is fabulous! The gritty meal gives the shortcake a wonderful crunch contrasted with the vanilla ice cream.
Someday I'll have to post Dee's shortcake recipe, but for now back to Adelae's muffins. As you can see, she likes to help clean the dishes! To stretch the muffins and make them more like a shortcake, I added 1 cup pancake mix, 1/3c milk, 1/2t baking soda, and 1/2t sugar to the standard Jiffy muffin directions of 1 egg and 1/3c milk. On the back of the Jiffy box they tell you to let the batter sit for a few minutes before baking for the best rise. A great tip, we used the time to grease our muffin tins, generously, with butter.
While the muffins were baking we had eight minutes to hull, wash, slice and mash our strawberries. Dee always hulls before she washes. Also, Dee ALWAYS adds a sprinkling of sugar to the berries "to bring out the juice." Her idea of a sprinkle is about a quarter of a cup, but my idea of a sprinkle is more like a 1/2t. I suppose it never hurts to be generous, but in the effort to keep our breakfast somewhat healthful, I stuck to my kind of sprinkle.
Before we knew it a charming little strawberry shortcake breakfast was ready to serve. Since I didn't cut a stick of butter into the muffins like Dee does with her shortbread, I set the butter out on the table.
The muffins, like shortcake, are dry - like little sponges ready to soak up the juicy strawberries! Instead of serving with ice cream, I set out a bowl of vanilla yogurt for a more breakfast-y alternative. Great idea, Adelae! Thank you for the inspiration, Dee!
Peter approved too!