I’m a rebel. I’m not going to post a cobbler recipe in the summer, because for the most part, I’m too hot and angry to bake in the summer. However, this summer, I got myself a half bushel of peaches from the Farmer’s Market and decided to make a peach cobbler on one of our cooler days AND can a couple of quarts of peaches AND make peach preserves. The canning and preserves will get their own post, but I did want to share the cobbler that I made. Granted this was made at the end of September, when peaches were dwindling, and I was feeling a bit adventurous.
The last cobbler I made was a recipe from Paula Deen, and while it filled a need for peaches and breading, it didn’t hit anything fully. I was missing the crust that I would nibble away on when I was a little kid. It seemed that the type of crust that I wanted was a pie crust, but not just any old pie crust. It was flaky, and could just be eaten all alone. Not made of lard either. I found that crust in a recipe from Rick Bayless, and the hidden ingredient seems to be cream cheese. Being a relatively new baker, this is news to me, and I will always use it. It provides the perfect backdrop to the peach filling, and you won’t regret it.
I do plan on creating a true cobbler recipe. You know the one where you drop the dough on top of the filling, and then bake that way. It’s more biscuit like than anything else, and it’s pretty, but so is this, so I’m not complaining. I do think that this cobbler lasted all of two days in my house, and that makes me happy. Although I only got one serving, and I was fine with that. You see, I’m a baker, that loves to bake, but can only eat so many sweets. The people in my house happen to love my issues, and eagerly await whatever I’m making to claim for themselves.
The peaches were PERFECT. I didn’t stick to the filling recipe from Rick Bayless because I wanted a bit more spice in my filling, so I played with combos of spices until I was happy. I did also love that this wasn’t a soupy filling (thanks to a cornstarch slurry) so cutting the cobbler was perfect.
Here is the recipe that I tweaked, just in case you don’t want to click over. This is by Rick Bayless, and I just changed up the filling a bit. I also halved the recipe because the people that I house could totally eat enough for 10 people in one sitting.
For the dough:
2 2/3 cups (13 oz) all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 sticks (8 oz) cold butter, cut into small pieces, kept chilled
Two 3-oz packages cream cheese, cut into small pieces, kept chilled
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
3 tablespoons cold tap water
For the filling:
5 pounds ripe peaches, or enough to make 6 cups of ½ inch peach cubes
1 to 1 1/4 cups sugar, plus a little extra for sprinkling over lattice crust
5 tablespoons cornstarch
A generous 1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1 1/2 tablespoons lemon or lime juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
A little milk for brushing over crust
2 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces
1. Make the cobbler crust:
Measure flour, baking powder and 1 teaspoon salt into a food processor. Add the chilled butter and cream cheese to the processor. Attach lid and pulse 6 or 7 times (1 second pulses) until the mixture looks like coarse crumbs. Uncover and evenly drizzle vinegar and water over mixture. Attach lid and pulse about 6 times until mixture begins to clump together – it won’t form a ball. Uncover and turn dough out onto a large sheet of plastic wrap. Press pieces of dough together, gather plastic wrap over top, then flatten into a 10×10-inch square. Refrigerate 1 hour.
2. Prepare the filling.
Place peaches in a bowl or bowls large enough to hold all of your fruit. Pour very hot (but not boiling) water over top the peaches, and let stand for 1 minute. Drain off water. Peel peaches, discarding the skins. Cut peach flesh away from each pit, and section peaches into 1/2 inch cubes. Measure out 6 cups of peach. In a large bowl, toss together peaches, sugar, cornstarch, nutmeg, lemon or lime juice and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
3. Assemble the cobbler.
Preheat oven to 400F, and position a shelf in the center. Remove dough from refrigerator. Unwrap and, using a knife, cut off 1/3 of dough. Re-wrap and refrigerate that 1/3 piece. Evenly flour work surface and remaining 2/3 of dough. With a rolling pin, roll dough into an 18×14-inch rectangle. Drape dough into a 13×9-inch glass baking dish, easing dough all the way into corners and allowing a little to hang over the top rim of the dish. Refrigerate dough-line baking dish. Re-flour work surface and evenly flour remaining 1/3 of dough. Roll dough into a 14×10-inch rectangle Cut lengthwise into ten 1-inch strips. Brush top edge of overhanging dough with a light coating of milk – just enough to make it sticky. Remove the dough-lined baking dish from the refrigerate and pour fruit mixture into the pan. Dot remaining 2 tablespoons of butter over the filling. Lay 4 strips of dough at even intervals lengthwise over fruit. Lay the remaining strips of dough at even intervals crosswise over fruit, creating a lattice. Use fork to seal strips to moistened edges. Trim off any overhanging dough. Brush lattice with milk, and sprinkle with a little sugar.
4. Bake the cobbler.
Bake 15 minutes at 400F. Reduce the temperature to 350F and bake for 30-40 minutes longer until fruit mixture is thick and bubbling and crust is browned. Cool 10 minutes before serving, or cool completely and re-warm.
Enjoy! I plan to make a true cobbler one of these cooler days with the peaches that I canned later. I also want to do a peach buckle and peach scones. We’re peaching it up!