I was really tempted to write, The BEST peach cobbler, because, I've never met a better one, but titles with such descriptives usually drive me away. I try to call it like it is, and this is a peach cobbler, if I know anything. I get a bit tired of seeing THE BEST everything, ya know? Only one can be right, and the rest are...full of themselves? Fudging? Just trying to get more clicks? All of the above?
However, in my opinion, this is the best. Why? Because it's my mom's peach cobbler. If you have the privilege of knowing my mom, then I need go no further. However, if you don't, all you need to know is, she's the greatest, and she knows her way around the kitchen. I think mom's are born knowing stuff like this.
Summer is all about picking the fresh produce, eating it, baking with it, and canning with it so you can enjoy the bounty of summer even in the winter months. Of course, nothing beats fresh food, so I think making as many fruity and vegetable-y dishes as you and your family and friends and neighbors and dog and strangers walking by can eat.
As it is now officially fall and the warm summer days are now tipped with the chilly mornings and evenings of the new season, I noticed that I have failed to take my own advice. Yes, I've made fruit dishes throughout the summer, in fact, almost on the daily, but an actual peach dessert? One of my favorite fresh fruits? Gasp. Before the last leaf falls I must make a peach cobbler, at least one! Ok, so I probably made it and ate it before even the first leaf fell, but hey, sometimes you need that sense of emergency and adrenaline rush. Um. Before eating dessert. (Does that burn more calories?)
As a last adieu to summer, before the recipes start reflecting fall, here is the recipe for The. Best. Peach Cobbler. In all its simplicity and flavors of summer.
Recipe from my mama, who has made this since I can remember.
Serves about 6
4 large ripe peaches
1 1/4 cups / 250g sugar
3 Tbsp / 42g oil
1/2 cup / 119g milk
1 cup / 120g all-purpose flour
1 tsp / 5g baking powder
dash of salt
1 tsp / 3g cornstarch
1 cup / 237g boiling water
Oven 375°F / 190°C. Ungreased 8x8in / 20x20cm baking dish.
Blanch the Peaches
To prepare the peaches, place a large pot of water on the stove and bring to a boil. While you are waiting, place a large bowl of cold or ice water near the stove.
Once the water is boiling, carefully place all 4 peaches into the water and blanch them (cook briefly in boiling water) for about 2 minutes. Remove them from the water with a slotted spoon and immediately dunk in ice water to stop the cooking.
Your peaches are now ready to slice and peel. Start by cutting the peaches in half with a paring knife and removing the pit. Then peel the peaches using the knife or your hands. The skins should slop off easily.
Slice peaches and place in bottom of prepared pan.
Make the Cobbler
In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine oil and 3/4 cup / 150g of the sugar. Add milk, flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix well. Dollop the batter by spoonful over the peaches.
In a small bowl, mix together the remaining 1/2 cup / 100g sugar with cornstarch. Sprinkle evenly over batter in the baking dish.
Finally, pour boiling water over top. Bake for 45-60 minutes, or until the sides are bubbling and the cobbler topping no longer looks doughy.
Serve this warm with a dollop of vanilla ice cream. Also delicious for breakfast, with or without the ice cream.
This recipe is adapted for a 8x8in pan, perfect for a small crowd. Or 1 person. But this is easily doubled for a 9x13in, and then there's enough to go around. Yay! If doubling, blanch the peaches in two batches.
Skin not coming easily off your peaches? Could be they weren't quite ripe enough. If they're mushy, could be your peaches were overripe or blanched slightly too long.
Have a different favorite fruit? Go ahead and use it in place of the peaches! This cobbler is very versatile.
You can use butter in place of oil. I learned from my mom to often use oil in the place of butter simply because of the healthier mono and poly unsaturated fats, versus the mostly saturated fats in butter. Just be aware of what kind of oil you use if you decide to go the "healthier" route, as not all oils are made equally.
Ok, so let's see if you've learned your lesson for today. What two things do you need to know about my mom? ;)