It’s state fair season, which where I come from, means two things: strawberry shortcakes and Fisher scones. I’m also a big fan of chickens with crazy feathers, prizewinning preserves, and the Tilt-A-Whirl. Corny as a lot of it is (See Kid Rock in concert! We deep fry anything!), I dig the fair big time.
Is there a fair in Georgia? Probably, but I can’t dissuade myself of the idea that it will be more like an open-carry festival starring the People of Walmart. (I desperately want rural Georgia to be charming, so if you have a better image, please enlighten me!)
Still, it’s peach season and we had our first whiff of fall yesterday, so in addition to being state fair time…it’s cobbler time.
This recipe was inspired by a shortcake recipe from Gluten Free Girl in 2011. I’ve been making this gluten free peach cobbler in secret for a very long time now. Sorry. Let’s fix that, shall we?
In my mind, cobbler is a baked fruit dish with cake on top, or at least Girl Scout camp taught me so. We used boxed Duncan Hines mix, and it was delicious as long as you didn’t accidentally tip ashes into your Dutch oven. In its purest form, though, cobbler is made with dollops of biscuit dough on top, resembling a cobbled road. My cobbler is more of a gravel road, but I’d like to think that it adheres to the spirit of the rule, if not the letter.
This recipe makes an appearance in our kitchen every summer when peaches come around, for two reasons: First, peach cobbler is everyone’s favorite and peaches are comparatively cheap. I’d love to do this with strawberries some year, but this recipe would feel wasteful made with $10 in strawberries. Berries are fairly sacred, and I’m loath to cover them in sugar and spices. Peaches, though? No such taboo.
The second reason for this cobbler’s popularity in my kitchen is the ready availability of not-so-good peaches. You know what I’m talking about: mealy, flavorless, perhaps refusing to ripen? Even here in the peach state, peaches are still picked underripe for transport, which means they’re hard as croquet balls when you pick them up in the store. I haven’t found a good way to determine whether a peach will ripen well or not, other than to buy them and wait. Sometimes my patience is rewarded with the sweet perfume and chin-dripping juicy goodness of a perfect peach. Sometimes they’re awful and I make a cake or a cobbler with them. Either way, we make do.
As you can see, the fruit to topping ratio here leans heavily in favor of the biscuit part. The peaches are good and all (cardamom and ginger will do that), but the topping? Oh man. I mentioned that this recipe originated with Shauna, and by that I mean it’s good. I appreciate a woman who isn’t shy about using enough butter, and doesn’t feel the need to dumb down her recipes with flavorless white rice flour and loads of extra sugar. The biscuit dough is barely sweet, and yes, it makes excellent shortcakes: just follow her recipe here.
So that’s it for the week! Summer is winding down and I’ve got exactly four days until I see my husband again. We’ll be meeting “halfway,” which means New York City! Armed with a huge list of must-sees from friends, I’m sure it will be a good time and that we’ll eat well. There should be some good stories and maybe even some photos for you next week. Until next time!
- 6 peaches (or nectarines), sliced
- (70g) 1/3 c. sugar
- (50g) ¼ c. brown sugar
- ½ tsp. cinnamon
- ½ tsp. ground ginger
- ¼ tsp. cardamom
- 1 Tbsp. cornstarch
- 315 g. gluten-free flour mix*
- 1 tsp. xanthan gum or psyllium husk
- 1 Tbsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. salt
- 3 Tbsp. (35g) sugar
- ½ c. (1 stick) butter, very cold, cut into cubes
- 1 tsp. vinegar
- ½ c. milk
- Mix together all ingredients for fruit layer and set aside. Have an 8"x8" baking dish handy.
- Make biscuit topping: Preheat oven to 350F. In a small bowl, combine vinegar and milk. Allow to sit a few minutes until it curdles slightly. Whisk together flour mix, xanthan gum or psyllium husk, baking powder, salt, and sugar in a medium bowl. Add butter and cut in with a pastry blender until it resembles coarse sand. Add sour milk and mix into a dough that doesn’t stick to your hands. (Mine was pretty soft—you might have to add a few Tbsp. more flour to get it right.)
- Assemble: Pour fruit mixture into prepared pan. Crumble biscuit dough evenly over the top in a thick layer, pressing lightly into the fruit. Bake 45 minutes, until biscuit layer is golden and fruit layer has bubbled through. Remove from oven and allow to cool about 15 minutes before spooning out & eating.
- *My flour mix was--
- 2/3 c. (95g) millet flour
- 2/3 c. (115g) potato starch
- 1/3 c. (55g) cornmeal
- 1/3 c. (50g) brown rice flour