I’m perusing recipes these days for quick, easy, requires-less-work-than-sitting-down, things like that. What those recipes that fit the bill also need are things like tastes awesome, looks-good-enough-to-jump-a-fence-for and family-friendly. What else would make the cut but a down-home, berry-bursting, biscuit-topped cobbler? In a cast-iron skillet no less? Yeah, buddy.
I’d had my eye on these cute little apricots in my Local Grocery Store That Regularly Fails Me. I made out my list of ingredients needed, thinking I’d better have an alternate recipe in mind in case they had up and evicted the apricots from the fruit and veggie section. Color me shocked when the small basket of fruit was still where I’d seen it last, that it was there at all.
Lord, I apologize for complaining about my store’s selection so much. Bless you for keeping the apricots in stock. I’ll genuflect to them next time, swearz. Peace out.
The first step is to cut up the fruitsies, yo! Apricots are a skin-friendly fruit, so no peeling. We approve. We approve a lot. Mix ‘em with the blueberries, a little cornstarch and some sugar. Toss gently and show them they’re landing spot in the bottom of that there skillet.
Even though the recipe says to use a food processor to make the topping dough, if you don’t have one, don’t worry. All the food processor does is makes this part of the recipe a lot easier and quicker. To do it by hand, use a hand-held pastry blender or a large fork to cut the butter into the flour until a fine, pea-sized-like mixture remains. You can stir in the liquid from there. The dough will be a pretty wet one.
After you spoon the dough onto the fruit, brush with a little cream and sprinkle with sugar if you like. We like. We like very much!
Baked up, this cobbler is as vibrantly colorful as it was beforehand. The bonus track is lots of yummy, thickened sauce from the fruit. Sauce you can spoon over, ahem, ice cream. We didn’t do the ice cream the day we made this and I could honestly kick myself. Guess we’ll just have to make it again!
This cobbler has a nice lushness to it all around, from the color right back to the taste. A full circle of awesomeness. The topping, made in the form of individual serving biscuits has a very mild flavor, which is perfect for pairing with the still-tangy fruit (it’s not loaded down too much with sugar for the amount of fruit!). The biscuits are soft, too, and combined with the baked fruit and sauce it all just melts in your mouth.
This was so easy and quick to make for such a big, down-home dessert. Highly recommended, our tongues say so.
Adapted slightly from Everyday Food, June 2012
Prep Time: 15 minutes Cook time: 45 minutes Level: Easy Serves: 8
1 tablespoon cornstarch
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
13 apricots, cut into 1/2-inch wedges
1 pint blueberries
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt (we used kosher)
1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
3/4 cup cold heavy cream, plus more for brushing
sanding sugar (optional)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees, with racks in middle and lower thirds. In a large bowl, whisk together cornstarch and 3/4 cup granulated sugar. Stir in apricots and blueberries. Spread mixture into a 10 or 12-inch cast iron skillet.
In a food processor, pulse remaining 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, flour, baking powder and salt until combined. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal, with a few pea-sized pieces of butter remaining. Add heavy cream and pulse 2 or 3 times until combined.
Spoon batter in 8 mounds on fruit mixture. Press lightly on tops to flatten (if dough tries to stick to utensil, water utensil slightly and try again), brush with heavy cream and sprinkle with sanding sugar if desired (you can also use regular granulated if you wish).
Bake on middle rack, with a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet on lower rack to catch drips, until biscuits are golden and juices bubble in center, 40 to 45 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. Serve warm or at room temperature. Cover and keep at room temperature, up to 2 days.
The original calls for 1 1/4 cups blueberries, but they vary in size so much. Ours happened to be pretty big berries, and it honestly was hardly even a handful. We thought that amount could not be right as a result. There was no way it would help fill even a 10-inch cast iron skillet or equivalent casserole.
We only have 12-inch skillets, so we used the entire pint of blueberries and upped the sugar by another scant 1/4 cup. We did not add any more cornstarch.
Something we have learned from having to cut butter into flour a lot – cut your butter into pieces very first thing and place it back in the fridge till ready to use. Butter starts to melt very quickly when handled for cutting into cubes. It will cut into the flour much better by being very cold.
You could substitute peaches for the apricots if needed. Their texture is similar, but the taste will vary slightly, though be no less yummy.