I am on a mission to become a better cook and that sometimes mean experimenting and trying out new recipes. Even though I make some dumb mistakes sometimes (like over-baking cookies!), I still want to share what is going on in my little kitchen.
This is where Cobbler Attempt #1 comes in. When having guests over for dinner, I prefer to make a baked desert. One, this means I will not be eating a whole desert by myself and two, baked goods are warm and inviting. Z. and I had another couple over for dinner the other night. Z. made his super yummy yakisoba and I tried contributing an apple cobbler.
I think it is time to expand my horizons. I have made my fair share of fruit crisps but never a cobbler. The only difference I can tell between a cobbler and a crisp is the topping. Cobblers have more of a biscuit or pie-type crust and a crisp has a crumbly topping.
My first try at a cobbler turned out alright, I learned a few things about making a cobbler crust and encountered a few questions but first the recipe I used this time.
Apple Cobbler, adapted from The Cobbler Crusade by Irene Ritter
Filling (or the bottom layer):
2 to 3 apples, peeled and sliced
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
pinch of salt
1/2 cup warm water or apple juice
1 tablespoon corn starch
1 tablespoon canola oil or butter cut into small pieces
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour or a combination of all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup canola oil (if using oil, may need 1-2 tablespoons water) or 1/2 cup milk (suggested)
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and spray a 9-inch square baking dish with non-stick spray.
- In a large bowl, combine the sliced apples, sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Make sure apples are thoroughly coated. Pour apples into prepared baking dish. Set aside.
- In a small bowl combine 1/2 cup warm water or apple juice with 1 tablespoon cornstarch. Mix thoroughly. Pour into baking dish with apples.
- Drizzle oil over top of apples or scatter pieces of butter over apples. Set aside.
- In another large mixing bowl, combine all the crust ingredients until well mixed.
- Spoon dough on top of apple filling, covering the apples.
- Bake 20 to 25 minutes, until crust is done. Serve warm or room temperature.
|Filling ingredients minus cornstarch and water|
|Whole-wheat flour (left) and all-purpose flour (right)|
|The rest of the topping ingredients|
Changes I will be making to Cobbler #2:
- As I was eating my cobbler, I was pondering how nice thick slices of apple would have been. I realized when making a fruit crisp I have always cut my apples or pears very thin and peaches rather thickly to enjoy their succulent flesh. Why not cut thick slices of apple?
- I used equal parts all-purpose flour and whole-wheat flour. The recipe I was using told me to look for a golden topping but in my experience, whole-wheat flour does not change color the same way white flour does. I could have taken the cobbler out of the oven after 20 minutes and had a lovely and fully cooked beige topping. Alas, I second-guessed myself and left the cobbler in the oven for 4 more minutes. The crust was fine, just not as perfect as I would have liked but the next day, I did not notice the over-doneness at all when eating the leftovers.
- The Cobbler Crusade said I could use 1/4 canola oil to bind the topping ingredients together. Great because I did not have milk! The mixture was very dry and not clumping so in a slight panic I added 1-2 tablespoons of water. I will have to investigate this further but I do know that the milk would help make a flakier crust. There are pros and cons to both.
- I am a dork and made the crust completely even. When the recipe mentioned creating a cobblestone effect with the dough, I got a little lost. I have seen cobblers before and happily eaten them but are those separate islands of biscuit the cobblestone effect?
- Any tips or suggestions to aid me in my own cobbler crusade?