18 June 2016

Montpelier Orchard Update: Cobbler!

As spring turns to summer, our neighbors’ thoughts turn to cooking out. This year’s limited harvest in the Montpelier Orchard lends itself perfectly to good old summertime potluck fare. Since hubby and I are invited to our first cookout of the year next weekend, it’s time for me to make a practice cobbler, before the main event. The Orchard's sour cherry trees are in full fruit and must be picked this week or everyone misses out.

Having just harvested two cups of these cherries, I pitted and drained them, and am about to marry these to white peaches for my first cobbler for 2016! Following my tried and true recipe I’ve made just a few tweaks to update it:

  • Using a 50/50 mix of cherries and peaches
  • Using a 50/50 mix of white sugar and coconut sugar (my new favorite sweetener)
  • Replacing the milk mixture in the batter with unsweetened almond milk

  • Fruity Ingredients:
    4 C sliced, peeled peaches
    1/8 TSP Chinese 5-Spice Powder
    1 tsp lemon zest
    3/4 C White sugar
    3/4 C Water

    Crusty Ingredients:
    1/4 C Melted butter 
    1/ C White Sugar
    1 1/2 C Self-rising flour
    1 C Milk + 1/2 C. water 

    Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine the water and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a simmer then add the rest of the fruity ingredients and let cook on the stove for 3 or so minutes. Then remove from heat.

    In a large cast-iron skillet (over medium heat) melt the butter then remove from heat. Mix the rest of the crusty ingredients in a bowl then pour into the skillet. Gently spoon the fruity mix over the batter in the skillet, then place it in the oven to bake for 50 minutes. I placed a cookie pan in the bottom of the oven to catch any overflow. There was none, but I'll continue to use one just in case.

    Anyway, the sweet, tasty crust will expand to the top as the fruit settles to the bottom of the skillet during baking. It's Deee-licious.

    Meanwhile Back at the Orchard...

    Also ready for plucking are: Kale, Red Leaf Lettuces, and several herbs (three types of sage, dill, chives, basil, rosemary, thyme, and lavender).