Sunday, August 29, 2010

Peach Cobbler

You needn’t fear that I’d abandoned my hankering for peach cobbler. I’m firmly in the “biscuit crust” cobbler camp. Pate brisee is a fine thing for pie, but that’s my primary use for said pastry. Cobblers demand a hefty biscuit crust, all the better with which to sop up delicious peach (or other fruit) juices.

This recipe is very, very generously adapted from the The America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook. I have yet to see an America’s Test Kitchen baked good recipe that demands yoghurt instead of cream, sour cream, or milk, but I think they’re missing out. I used vanilla yoghurt as the biscuit’s moistener to add both sweetness and flavor and have no cause to regret it. The biscuit topping was light, tender, and moist – the perfect foil to the succulent fruit that lay beneath.

I only used six peaches but recommend using eight peaches or more because I found the cobbler’s biscuit-to-fruit ratio slightly biscuit-heavy. If you prefer a more even peach-biscuit ratio, feel free to skimp on the fruit.

Peach Cobbler
Generously adapted from The America's Test Kitchen Family Cookbook

6-8 medium peaches (I used 6 and recommend 8, but I like a high fruit-to-biscuit ratio), peeled and sliced
½ cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
1 tablespoon whiskey or amaretto
2 tablespoons corn starch
¼ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon butter

½ cup white-wheat flour and ½ cup all-purpose flour (or 1 cup all-purpose flour)
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
4 tablespoons (half a stick) unsalted butter, cold and cut into chunks
1 6-oz container vanilla yoghurt (low-fat is fine)
turbinado sugar for sanding

Preheat oven to 400. Mix together peaches, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, whiskey/amaretto, cornstarch, and salt. Turn into a 8-9” square baking dish, dot with the tablespoon of butter, and bake for about 20 minutes.

While peaches are baking, stir together flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar. Using a pastry cutter, fork, or your hands, cut butter into dry ingredients until incorporated in pea-sized pieces. Add yoghurt and stir just until blended. Drop in nine fairly even dollops over the top of the peaches and spread as needed. Sprinkle the top of the dough with turbinado sugar and return to oven for 15-20 minutes, or until biscuit topping is light golden brown.

Printable recipe here.

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