1. Have 8 skewers ready. If you are using bamboo skewers, soak them in water while you prepare the shortcakes.
2. Prepare the shortcakes. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or spray with vegetable cooking spray.
3. In a large bowl mix the flour, sugar, baking soda, ginger, and salt. Add the butter and use your fingers or a pastry cutter to work the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles small peas. Alternately, use a food processor.
4. Whisk the egg in a small bowl. Whisk in 3?4 cup of the buttermilk. Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and, using a spoon, mix until well incorporated. If the dough is too sticky, add additional flour 1 Tbsp. at a time.
5. On a well-floured work surface, roll out the dough to a 3?4-inch thickness. Using a 3-inch biscuit or cookie cutter (or a glass with a 3-inch diameter rim) cut out 8shortcakes, rerolling the dough as needed.
6. Place shortcakes on the prepared baking sheet at least 2 inches apart. Brush the surface of each shortcake using the remaining 1?4 cup buttermilk. Sprinkle each with 1?4 tsp. of the remaining sugar. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes, or until cakes are a pale golden brown. Remove and let cool. The shortcakes can be made several hours ahead of time.
7. Prepare the strawberries. Remove stems. Place 4 to 6 berries on each skewer. Sprinkle with 2 Tbs. sugar, turning to coat the berries. Let rest for 10 minutes. Preheat grillto medium-high. Use a grill rack if desired. Place skewers on the grill rack and grill for 1 to 3 minutes, depending on the ripeness of the berries. They should be slightly softened, with a few grill marks. Carefully flip over and grill another 1 to 3 minutes, or until berries are just softened. Remove and let rest for 1 minute.
8. Prepare the whipped cream. Using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, whip the cream in a large bowl until it begins to thicken. Add the vanilla; then, while whipping, add the sugar. Continue whipping until soft peaks appear.
9. To serve, cut each shortcake in half horizontally and place on a dessert plate. Remove the strawberries from the skewers and cut in half. Place the slices from one skewer on the bottom half of a shortcake. Top with a dollop of whipped cream and then gently place the other half on top. Then top that with a smaller spoonful of whipped cream and a strawberry slice, if desired. Serve immediately.
Source: fresh magazine May, June 2010