As the summer winds down and school starts back up, I experience a craving for cookout food. It’s probably just to get one last ‘taste’ of summer (no pun intended) but it always happens.
Charcoal grilled chicken and hotdogs. Potato salad. Baked beans. I want it all. Of course, desserts are also an essential part of that craving: pies, cobbler, trifle, pudding. Anything I can spoon ice cream or whipped cream on, really.
Maybe you too would like to take one last bite of summer this Labor Day weekend with a cookout of your own–or maybe you’ll just see this post and want to make it for yourself. Both reasons are valid, because this? This is truly something special.
It’s been a while since I last had a fruit dessert, more specifically a cobbler. Can’t remember the last time I had one of those. So this week, in my quest to eat my summery dessert I decided to go with this, then decided it was tasty enough to share here on the blog.
When I was putting this together, I thought that it would be like an upside down cake. It’s not. And although ‘cobbler’ is in the title, it isn’t a cobbler either.I think of this as a hybrid between a cobbler and a buckle. (As an aside, a buckle involves a cake batter that is placed underneath the fruit, then baked in the oven until the cake batter puffs up and the fruit begins to sink/BUCKLE inwards–hence the name.)
This starts out with a cake-like batter. Most of it will then get layered into a 13 x 9 baking dish, then the fruit gets layered on top of that. Now, I went with nectarines and blackberries, but I think that this will work with just about any pair of stone fruit and berries that tickles your fancy, or that you can get your hands on.
I will say this though: the amount of baking time this will require is going to strongly depend on which fruits/berries you use, and how ripe they are at the time that you use them. Raspberries are softer and release more juice than most of the other berries. Also, riper fruits will release more juice, which is going to take longer to cook through to avoid the center being runny. I’ll try to make it easier by just advising you to conduct a ‘wobble’ test on the bake: if it wobbles too much in the center when you give the dish a shake, it’s probably going to need a little bit more time in the oven. (Or it’ll be runny in the middle, just like a cobbler but if that doesn’t bother you, no harm no foul.)
After it’s had enough time to cool, you should be able to cut into it and serve it in squarish portions. The top has a glorious sugary crackly crust that’s a perfect textural contrast to the softness of the fruit and the cake below. When you put a scoop of vanilla ice cream or plain whipped cream on top, what you’ll have is a perfect end of summer dessert that gives it the sendoff it deserves. So get into it before it’s too late.
Blackberry-Nectarine Cobbler Bake
Recipe Adapted from Southern Living
- 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
- 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- 1 1/2 cups white sugar, divided
- 4 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 3 1/4 cups all purpose flour, divided
- 3 (6 oz.) packages fresh blackberries (about 4 cups)
- 4 cups sliced, peeled fresh, firm & ripe nectarines
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray a 13 x 9 baking pan with non-stick spray and set aside. Combine the baking powder, salt and 3 cup of the flour together in a medium size bowl and set aside.
Beat together the first 2 ingredients and 1 cup of the white sugar together in the bowl of a standing mixer (or using a handheld one) until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing just until blended. Add the vanilla.
Gradually add the flour mixture to the butter mixture, in about 1 cup increments, mixing just until blended.
Stir together the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar, 1/4 cup of flour together and pour over the nectarines in a medium size bowl; stir to coat.
Use a spatula to spread 3/4 of the batter in the bottom of the baking pan. Sprinkle the blackberries over the batter. Spread the nectarines over the blackberries. Use the spatula to spread the rest of the batter over the fruit. Sprinkle the top with a thin layer of white sugar.
Bake for 1 1/2 hours until the top is golden and bubbly and the center no longer wobbles when you shake the pan. (You may have to cover the top with foil to prevent over browning.) Cool completely on a wire rack before serving (about 1 hour).