This is a cobbler (A.K.A.: crumble, Brown Betty or crisp) I made the other night after work when I was especially burned out and in need of a great comforting dessert that I could put together without having to read or follow a cookbook or an online recipes. Basically, I used the formula I always do for my fruit cobblers, and threw in whatever I felt would work that was kicking around at the time.
I used a bag of frozen mixed berries I bought at the grocery store back when they were on sale for this very type of occasion. It was a mix of strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries. I cut the bag open at the top and down from sternum to tailpipe, and dropped the frozen lump into my baking pan. While that came up in temperature enough that I could break it up with my wooden spoon, I assembled the rest of the filling in a small bowl, and then assembled the topping ingredients in a slightly bigger bowl. When everything was prepped and the fruit was softened up enough, I took the butter out of the fridge and diced it up into half inch cubes, and separated them into two piles – one for the top, one for the bottom of the cobbler.
Here is what I came up with the other night for ingredients. The overall taste was spot on my target, and the husband was really into it. WIN!
Auntie Stacey’s Mixed Fruit Brown Betty:
1 Bag Frozen Mixed Fruit, enough to fill a 6-8 serving medium size baking dish
1 Pinch Salt
1 Tea Ground Cinnamon
1/4 Tea Ground Cardamom (optional – I happen to always have it on hand)
1/4 C Brown Sugar, lightly packed
4 Tbsp Cornstarch
3 Tbsp Cold Butter, cubed
Juice of half a Lime
Mix this into a small bowl and toss it over the fruit. Use a spatula to mix everything enough. None of the ingredients have to be perfectly incorporated, and there’s no need to work the butter cubes into the filling’s dry ingredients. This is a rustic dessert, not a sophisticated Cherries Jubilee.
1 1/2 C Old Fashioned Oats
1/2 C Flour
3 Tbsp Cold Butter, cubed
1/4 Tea Ground Cinnamon
Using a butter cutting gadget, or two knives, or your fingers, cut up the butter and incorporate as much of the finer dry ingredients for the topping into the butter as you want. Again, it doesn’t have to be perfect or even all smooshed up. It’s a rustic dessert, so leave some clumps untouched and unsmooshed.
Top the filling with this crumbled mixture and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes uncovered. Leaving it uncovered will allow the oats in the topping to crisp up nicely as it deepens in colour.
Let it rest at least 20 minutes before you dig in. At least! I let mine rest up to a full hour sometimes. What the rest period does for the dessert is to allow more time for the mixture of cornstarch and brown sugar in the filling to cook down all liquid coming out of the fruit into a love thickened syrup. That syrup, by the way, is great spooned over some ice cream or whipped cream should you serve that alongside this dessert. (And I highly recommend that you do.)
PS: I was so frazzled from work the other night, we ate it all over two days and never once thought about taking a picture for this blog entry. My apologies. You all know what cobblers look like, right? If not, and you don’t or can’t wait till I make this again to photograph, you can always use Google images to see what these desserts looks like.