Cobblers are often thought to take the place of pies--if you don’t know how or don’t want to bake a pie. I beg to differ. Cobblers, along with crisps, buckles, fools, and pandowdies, etc., are their very own lovely desserts…or breakfasts. True, they’re a bit quicker or easier to both make and bake as they have only one layer of some sort of crust, but they differ in many other ways. (Fools have no crust at all!) For me, the filling of a cobbler, in particular, isn’t nearly as sweet and surely isn’t as caloric as that of a pie with two crusts. Instead of pie pastry or pâte brisée, there is–for cobbler– a soft, billowy-pillowy biscuit topping with a crunchy edge that merely sets off the great big bite of fruit. And, while others might disagree, I’d typically only make a cobbler when the fruit was at its peak. Mid-winter apple cobbler might be the exception. Yes, it’s hot to bake right now and yes, it’s perfectly luscious, too.
|Just add ice cream|
Gently put: I’m so very, very thrilled to be able to bake. Anything. To leave a burner on for soup. Any kind. Blessed fall, I welcome you with a full slate of cooking I’ve been dying to do for a month.
My husband started wandering around a few weeks go saying things like:
What he meant was Any chance there are any Christmas cookies left in the big freezer? Because I don’t bake in the summer. Not unless there’s a birthday and I get up very early to do it. He was then snarfing around to see if I’d laid back any shortbread; I keep packaged Scots shortbread to crumble in ice cream parfaits. Finally I just had to bake. He couldn’t go another day. (There were no Christmas or any other kind of cookies in the big freezer in the garage.)
And once the baking gets going in the fall, it includes all things apple. And since it was time for apple cobbler, I thought I’d make a new one that included a few other things. The resulting cobbler was worthy of fall. A few toasted walnuts…some dried figs…and of course, today’s treat: apricots. (In this case dried apricots.) I had fun baking them in individual coffee cups (French porcelain by Apilco–oven-safe) and, naturally, topping them with a little vanilla ice cream. Try this:
coffee cup apple cobbler with apricots, dates,
makes 6 or 7, depending on the size of your cups (If you use ramekins, it will make more.)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
For the filling:
- 5 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup chopped, toasted walnuts
- 1/4 cup each chopped dried figs and apricots
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon each: ground ginger and nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 4 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
Mix together all of the ingredients except the butter in a medium bowl. Divide the mixture evenly between greased cups while you make the biscuit topping. Dot each cup of fruit mixture with butter.
For the biscuit topping:
- 1 cup unbleached flour
- 2 tablespoons of white sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick or 1/4 cup) butter, chilled
- 6 tablespoons milk
Combine the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder in a bowl or in the food processor fitted with the steel blade. Stir together with a fork or by pulsing the machine. Cut the butter into bits and using a either a pastry blender, two knives, your fingers or by pulsing the machine, work it into the flour mixture until it resembles fine crumbs. Slowly add the milk, stirring constantly with a fork or by leaving machine running. Gather the dough together on a floured board and knead ten times. Roll or pat dough until it’s no more than 1/2 inch thick. Cut dough in circles (size of the top of the cup diameter) and top each cup of fruit mixture with dough.
- 1 tablespoon melted butter
- Vanilla (or cinnamon) ice cream for serving
Brush the top of each circle of dough with a little melted butter. Place cups on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 20-30 minutes until bubbly and golden brown. Let cool 20 minutes or more before serving warm or at room temperature with vanilla or cinnamon ice cream. Store leftovers tightly covered in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.
If you want to bake this in one pan, it’ll be fine. Use a greased 8×8 square baking pan and roll the dough out to fit inside that pan.
Biscuit topping recipe courtesy THE FANNY FARMER BAKING BOOK by Marion Cunningham.
About those dried apricots:
Protein and Fat
Vitamins and Minerals
Nutritional information for fresh apricots available here.
If you liked this recipe, you might like my Low-Fat Granola, which includes yummy dried apricots:
I blog with a great group of food writers on Fridays as we cook our way through the list of foods from Whole Living Magazine’s Power Foods: 150 Delicious Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients: Read more about beautiful apricots this week at these sites:
Alanna – http://kitchen-parade-veggieventure.blogspot.com/
Sarah – Everything in the Kitchen Sink
Join us! We’d like to have you as part of the group:
To become involved with our blogging team, get in touch with Mireya from My Healthy Eating Habits: Mireya@MyHealthyEatingHabits.com
30 Soups in 30 Minutes…(new book) Update
Testing Two Mushroom-Red Onion with Cheddar and
Cream of Spicy Pumpkin this week. Good thing we like soup.
The pumpkin was done in twenty minutes. Don’t buy
cartons of soup if you can make soup this quickly and
know exactly what’s floating around in your bowl.
two-dog kitchen and around the ‘hood:
The squirrels are so nutty right now ( good pun)…The dogs and I counted seven right in front of us on our walk the other day. Up trees, across roads…yes, I’ll go this way/no I’ll go that way. They’re crazy!
We are screaming for rain…it’s so dry lots of things are just browning up and dusting away instead of turning
|Just for fun (tea spoon for scale) Brussels Sprouts from Trader Joe’s today|
|Apfel Pfannkuchen (apple pancake) on the Dinner Place/Solo Cook blog right now.|
Sing a new song; bake a new anything!