I’m trying to be a little more mindful of what I’m eating (meaning: actually deciding if I’m hungry before I shovel snacks into my mouth). I’m sure many of you struggle with jobs that make eating a bit difficult, but I feel like after a year of getting used to commuting from house to house to see my clients, I’ve finally figured out how to eat through the day. I didn’t give myself an official lunch hour (yay for making my own schedule!), and this can be tricky for a few reasons: 1) I have to pack foods that I don’t need to heat up or that are too difficult to eat while driving; and 2) I get home around 3:30-4:30 most days, which is prime “fill-up-on-snacks-right-before-I’m-supposed-to-eat-dinner” time. But between carrots and hummus, hard-boiled eggs, fruit and veggies, good ol’ PB&Js, granola bars, etc., I’m getting the hang of eating enough that I’m not starving when I get home. I also eat a huge breakfast to fuel me through all the kid-time in the morning.
(Speaking of vegetables, I’m super excited for my first experience with one of Rochester’s CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) farms. We signed up with a newish farm around town, Markwood Acres, and I can’t wait to start picking up our fresh veggies starting at the end of the month! Here’s a look at my first experience with a CSA on Long Island, all the way back in 2011).
But the best part about trying to eat well during the morning and afternoon is feeling good about having a real dessert or gigantic glass of wine with dinner.
I’m not the kind of gal who turns down a glass of Merlot (or cab sav. or…) when offered, and I also have a serious sweet tooth that just can’t be addressed with apples or a single piece of dark chocolate (who makes those suggestions, anyway?).
So I like to set myself up to have my cobbler, and eat it too.
Peach and Strawberry Cobbler (adapted from A Brown Table’s peach and black raspberry cobbler)
for the fruit filling:
- 6 ripe peaches
- 1 pint of strawberries
- 1 t vanilla extract
- 1 T lemon juice
- 1 t lemon zest
- 1/2 C brown sugar
- 1 T cornstarch
for the topping:
- 2 C all-purpose flour
- 1/2 C brown sugar (divided in half–save 1/4 C to sprinkle on top)
- 1/2 t salt
- 2 t baking powder
- 1/2 C cold butter (1 stick)
Just to preface this, I was highly skeptical of this recipe and baking technique. I was on the phone with my older sister in California (hey, Erin!), and told her that I was fairly certain it wouldn’t work. She reassured me that it would be fine, and as usual, Erin was right.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. You need six individual serving dishes–I used two different types of ramekins (deep and shallow creme brûlée dishes), and both had pros and cons regarding their topping-to-fruit ratio (it’s all your preference, really).
Peel the peaches, remove the pit, and cube into small chunks. Remove the hull from the strawberries and slice into not–too-thin slices. Add the vanilla extract, lemon juice, lemon zest, and brown sugar (1/2 C), and mix.
Dust the cornstarch over the top (using a sieve if possible to prevent clumps), and stir well. Cover and refrigerate for 15 minutes while you mix up the topping.
Combine the flour, 1/4 C of the remaining brown sugar, salt, and baking powder. Slice the butter into small cubes and toss in the flour mixture.
Spoon the fruit and juice evenly between the baking dishes (if you have the same size!). There was definitely a lot more fruit in the deep ramekins than I could fit in the long and shallow baking dishes, but that’s fine! You want to leave some space in the dishes for the flour mixture to go on top.
Divide the flour mixture on top of each dish. I actually used only about 3/4s of the flour mixture, probably because my shallow dishes couldn’t hold quite as much (but I made sure to add all the butter…because yum!). Make sure there are butter pieces on the top of each dish, and try to distribute the butter as evenly as possible. The original recipe estimates about 1/4 C of dry topping on each dish. Sprinkle the remaining brown sugar on top.
Place the cobblers on top of a baking sheet or dish, and bake for about 45 minutes, or until the top is crunchy brown and there’s plenty of juices bubbling around the edges.
The dry flour mixture magically turns into a biscuit topping while the butter melts and juices from the fruit is absorbed. And it is truly, seriously, amazingly delicious.
The butter melts with the sugar for a perfect crunchy top, too.
You could definitely serve this with ice cream (or unsweetened whipped cream would be perfect), but we didn’t have any. Plus, I definitely chose wine over ice cream.
And always serve with a gratuitous cat picture, of course.