Searching for the Perfect Peach Cobbler

Although I bought both ripe and un-ripe peaches on Saturday, those that I didn’t use in the first cobbler were already ripe by Monday given the heat wave we had over the weekend.  Although making another recipe meant a ton of peach cobbler in the house, I didn’t want to waste the fruit (and so far no one has turned me down when I’ve offered them peach cobbler).

I decided to try this recipe from Gourmet (September 1999).  I used huge, gorgeous yellow peaches from Hamada Farms.  I think I might like these yellow peaches even better than the two varieties I bought from Blossom Bluff.  These large yellow peaches had that traditional sweet/tart classic yellow peach taste that immediately transports you to where ever you were, which ever summer it was, when you first experienced a perfect peach.

peaches

___

topping

on the way in

___

out

I loooved this.  I pains me to admit it, because I’m so sentimentally devoted to Lee Bailey, but I like this cobbler much better than the first.  There are two reasons why.

First, the lemon.  Baking even the best peaches with any amount of sugar creates a heavy sweetness.  Just a small amount of lemon (one tablespoon in this case) is a reliable means of ensuring the acidity of the raw peaches remains a vibrant part of the final product.  Second, the crust.  I really loved Bailey’s crust (I guess that makes me a Crisco lover), but in my opinion this topping (it’s more a topping than a crust) is more authentically cobbler.  It’s ever so slightly cake-y and crumbly, qualities I think any true cobbler should have.

One criticism with a disclaimer.  First the disclaimer: I love sweet things, and I’ve been known to have a sweet tooth.  But, as with the first cobbler, I felt that this was much sweeter than necessary.  Perhaps I’m a purist when it comes to fruit.  Fruit desserts are some of my favorite, and any fruit that has been baked, cut, seasoned, or otherwise assembled by human hand is certainly distinct from fruit straight from the tree.  That said, I appreciate desserts that preserve as much of the fruit’s natural integrity as possible.

The quarter cup of sugar that goes in with the peaches seems appropriate, but I plan on making this again for the final cobbler bake-off (okay, I’m the only participant so far) and next time I will use far less sugar in my topping.  The recipe calls for a 1/2 cup where I’m sure a 1/4 cup would suffice.

More peaches and peach cobbler updates later in August.

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1 Comment

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One response to “Searching for the Perfect Peach Cobbler

  1. That first picture of the peaches is PERFECTION!

    Have a nice time in L.A. I know you don’t think so, but I think Los Angeles can really soothe in a serious way, if you know how to do it… and I know YOU know how to do it!

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