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Berry Cobbler

Berry Cobbler
The variety of berries and the amount of each type you use for this simple yet satisfying cobbler will depend on what looks good at the market. This basic recipe can also be used for other seasonal fruit cobblers: Use 6 to 8 peeled and sliced apples in autumn or peaches in midsummer.

Ingredients:

  • 2 lb. mixed berries
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup plus 3 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbs. cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger

For the cobbler topping:

  • 2 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed golden brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) chilled unsalted butter,
     cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup finely minced crystallized ginger
  • Vanilla ice cream for serving (optional)

Directions:

Preheat an oven to 375°F. Lightly butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

In a bowl, combine the berries, lemon juice, the 1/2 cup granulated sugar, the cornstarch, cinnamon and ground ginger and toss to coat the berries evenly. Pour the berry mixture into the prepared baking dish, spreading it evenly.

To make the topping in a food processor, combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda and pulse briefly to mix. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and cream. Pour the egg mixture into the food processor and pulse just until the topping mixture holds together. Remove the blade from the food processor and stir in the crystallized ginger.

To make the topping by hand, in a bowl, stir together the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda. Scatter the butter pieces over the top and, using a pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and cream. Slowly pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture, stirring and tossing with a fork until the topping mixture holds together. Stir in the crystallized ginger.

Using a soup spoon, place dollops of the topping evenly over the berries, leaving a 1-inch border uncovered around the edge of the dish. Sprinkle the 3 Tbs. granulated sugar over the top. Place the dish on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake the cobbler until the top is golden and the berry filling is bubbling, about 35 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool for 10 to 15 minutes.

Using a large spoon or spatula, scoop out the cobbler onto individual plates. Accompany with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Serves 8.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Entertaining, Edited by Chuck Williams (Oxmoor House, 2004).