While this cobbler isn’t the typical way to begin a new year (black eyed peas? no thanks!), it certainly was a delicious start. I used to balk at the idea of apples and cheese together. When you think about it, it just sounds wrong. But it’s a combination I’ve grown to love, and this cobbler is no exception.
This recipe is from a cookbook that I purchased just after Christmas called Rustic Fruit Desserts. The book is absolutely beautiful, and if all the recipes are like this one, I can tell it’s going to get a lot of use. The recipes seem well thought out, this one mentions to start pre-baking the apples while you make the biscuit topping, so they will be nice and soft when it’s done.
The biscuits on top are salty from the cheese and just a tad sweet, and the apples cook perfectly. It’s sublime, and I’ll definitely be making it again.
I used a combination of Cameo and Braeburn apples, which were a nice accent to the brown sugar/cinnamon mix. You’ll need to put a piece of aluminum foil under the pan while baking, the juices bubble up a lot and chaos ensues. (sugar! burning! in the oven! smoke detector going off! dogs barking!) Also, I’ll make my biscuits just a tad smaller next time, as the bottoms were a bit on the under done side. Overall, it’s a great recipe, and it might be my new favorite cobbler.
Apple Cobbler with Cheddar Biscuits
from Rustic Fruit Desserts
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature, for dish
For fruit filling:
1 cup packed (7 1/2 ounces) medium brown sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
8 large apples, peeled, cored, and sliced 1/4 inch thick (3 1/2 pounds prepped)
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup (2 ounces) unsalted butter
2 cups (10 ounces) all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
2 cups (4 ounces) grated extra-sharp Cheddar cheese
1 1/3 cups cold buttermilk, or more as needed
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 375° F. Butter a 3-quart baking dish.
To make the fruit filling, with your hands, rub the brown sugar, cornstarch, salt, and cinnamon together in a large bowl. Add the apples and toss to evenly coat. Gently stir in the lemon juice. Let the apples sit for 15 minutes to release some of their juices. Mix the filling more than one time before scraping the contents into the prepared pan. Cut the butter into small cubes and scatter over the apples.
Cover the pan with foil and bake in the lower third of the oven for 20 minutes. This gives the apples a jump start on cooking while you make the biscuits.
To make the biscuits, whisk the flour, 1 tablespoon of the sugar, the baking powder, and the salt together in a bowl. Add the cheese and toss until evenly coated. Make a well in the center of the bowl and add the buttermilk. With a rubber spatula or fork, or by hand, stir just until the dry ingredients are moistened. The dough will be shaggy and moist. If the dough seems dry, add a bit more buttermilk, no more than 1 tablespoon at a time.
Take the baking pan out of the oven and remove the foil. In 1/4 cup portions, place the dough atop the fruit, distributing the biscuits evenly. (You should end up with about 9 biscuits.) Sprinkle the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar over the biscuits.
Return the cobbler to the oven (this time without the foil) and bake for an additional 30 to 40 minutes, or until the apples are tender, the juices are bubbling, and the biscuits are golden brown.
Storage: This dessert is best served the day that it is made, but any leftovers can be wrapped in plastic wrap (or foil) and kept at room temperature for 2 to 3 days.
If you'd like to keep up with my project 365 progress, I've put a link over in the side bar to the flickr set where I'll be uploading all the photos.