Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Outer Cape Blueberry Cobbler

We're on vacation with my family in Cape Cod for a week, renting a house in Wellfleet. Bill and I spent an hour gathering tiny wild blueberries along the bike trails by the Marconi Station. They baked up beautifully into this intensely delicious cobbler. P-Town artist Joan Cobb Marsh gave me this recipe a few years ago (she makes her cobbler with peaches) and I've made it regularly ever since. It works with any kind of fruit as long as you use about 4 cups of it. Guests fight over the leftovers. I even made it with frozen peaches once, and it was still outstanding. The science behind the dish seems counterintuitive at first: i.e., you would think that heaping the fruit on top of the batter would result in a big pile of mush, but the batter rises as the fruit falls, and 50 minutes after you stick it in the oven, the layers have all sorted themselves out, ending up with a delicate top crust and pillowy middle with a cohesive pie-like filling in between.

1 cup sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 cup milk
1/2 cup butter: melted
4 cups fresh blueberries, or frozen blueberries, thawed but not drained, tossed with 2 T sugar. (If the berries are fresh, wash and pick over them well before using.)
Stir together sugar, flour and baking powder; add milk and butter and mix with a wire whisk or beater until well blended. Pour batter evenly into a greased 2 quart square baking dish. (You can also use a rectangular disposable pan as we did in the photo. The cobbler will be flatter and thinner, but just as good.) Add berries and their juice on top of the batter, distributing them evenly but keeping an outer edge of batter all the way around. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 50 to 60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool a little bit before serving -- at least 20 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream. Serves 8 - 10.

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