My friend Suzanne has been coming over a lot recently, helping my mother and me raid my next door neighbor Pat’s Blenheim apricot tree (with Pat’s blessing of course). Suzanne has 3 growing teenagers to feed, so she can put those apricots to work! This week she walked me through her steps of making a fruit cobbler, using blackberries and Pat’s apricots. What I love about cobbler recipes is that they are so forgiving. If they end up runny, that’s okay because you aren’t trying to contain them in a pie shell. If they’re a little too tart, just serve them with some vanilla ice cream. Cobblers travel well for potlucks and you just serve them with a spoon. Best of all, they’re a wonderful way to enjoy the fruit of the season.
Apricot Berry Cobbler Recipe
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 Tbsp white granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (1 stick or 4 ounces) butter softened plus 1/4 cup melted butter
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 2 Tbsp brown sugar
- 5 cups pitted, quartered apricots (Blenheims if you can get a hold of some)
- 3 cups blackberries (or boysenberries or blueberries)
- 1 cup white granulated sugar
- 2 Tbsp flour (for thickening)
1 In medium bowl toss the apricots, berries, 1 cup white sugar, and 2 Tbsp flour together. Place filling into baking dish (one 9x13x2 baking dish, or two smaller baking dishes).
2 Whisk together the 2 cups of flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, 1 Tbsp white sugar in a medium bowl. Cut the butter into small cubes and toss into the flour mixture. Work the butter with your fingers to smear it and crumble it into the flour, until the mixture resembles a coarse cornmeal.
Tip: at this point, if you briefly heat the apricot berry mixture in the microwave or oven, until it is warm, it will help the biscuit topping to rise.
3 Add almond extract to the buttermilk, then form a well in the middle of the flour mixture and pour in the buttermilk. Gently mix (with wooden spoon or your hands) until the dough just comes together. Do not over-mix.
4 Form "cobblestone" shapes of the dough and arrange on the top of the apricot berry mixture. (You can also just crumble the dough over the top.) Sprinkle brown sugar over the top of the dough. Drizzle melted butter over the top (aim for the fruit more than the biscuits). Preheat oven to 425°F. Let the cobbler sit and rise for 10-20 minutes before baking.
5 Bake at 425°F for 10-15 minutes or until the top is just beginning to brown, then reduce the heat to 350°F. Cook for an additional 30 to 40 more minutes, until the center fruit is thickened and bubbly. Check during cooking, if the topping is getting too brown, cover it with foil and turn the heat down to 325°F.
Yield: Serves 8-10.