Spring came a few days early. Today, the sun was shining. The weather was warm. People were out and about. The robin I spotted a few days ago must have been a sign. The streets were fittingly speckled with green. I know St. Patty’s day was the source of the green, but it might as well have been a symbol: spring has arrived. In that spirit, I may have jumped the gun seasonally with this recipe. In deciding what sweet treat to try out tonight, my mind went straight to summer. And to my mind, nothing says summer like peaches, berries and cobbler.
The nice thing about frozen fruit is that your cravings don’t have to be in season for you to enjoy them. Having figured out my fruit of choice, I referenced my Joy of Cooking for some biscuit inspiration. Even though Joy is inconspicuously lacking many things gluten, dairy, egg or sugar free, it’s my go-to reference when I’m trying out new dishes. It’s just a great starting point for figuring out proportions, flavors or additions to any dessert. Joy‘s cobbler topping recipe had a variation for a cornmeal topping. I love cornmeal in sweet dishes, so that idea stuck with me as I was preparing this tonight. And when I’m baking with cornmeal, I almost always add some lemon zest. Before long, a gluten free, agave sweetened, vegan fruit cobbler was bubbling in my oven, and I was enjoying it not too long after that.
What would I do different next time? While I love Bob’s Red Mill for soooo many reasons, their cornmeal is a bit grainy for my taste (and for my teeth — I bit down on a few pieces that had a distinct, hard crunch). I think I might use a bit of a finer grind of cornmeal next time around. The middle of the cobbler was also just slightly underdone on the bottom part of the biscuit, though the top came out perfectly golden brown. I actually happen to like the biscuits this way, so I probably wouldn’t change the recipe next time around, but if you like your top a bit crisper, you may want to reduce the coconut milk to 1/4 cup. If you happen to have really ripe, fresh peaches on hand, feel free to use those. You can adjust the cooking time accordingly. I think this recipe would be great with just about any type of juicy fruit filling. The amount of agave can be adjusted depending on the type of fruit and its sweetness.
I made this in my Le Creuset Dutch Oven just because I’ve always wanted to bake a cobbler in that thing, really (don’t ask me why). But I imagine this could work in just about any casserole dish or even a deep pie dish.
Blackberry Peach Filling:
20 oz. (about 4 cups) frozen sliced peaches
10 oz. (about 1 1/2 cups) frozen blackberries
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons potato starch
2 tablespoons agave nectar
1 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup potato starch
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup light coconut milk (shake can before using)
1/3 cup grapeseed oil
1/2 cup agave nectar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
zest of one lemon
1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Toss ingredients for filling in a 3 quart baking dish or oven safe enameled Dutch Oven. Set aside.
3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together dry ingredient for topping (sorghum flour through baking soda). Whisk in coconut milk, grapeseed oil, agave, lemon juice and zest. Mix until incorporated. Drop batter in large spoonfuls over filling to cover fairly evenly.
4. Bake cobbler, uncovered, in preheated oven for 35-45 minutes, until top is golden brown and fruit is bubbly. Let sit for 10-15 minutes before serving.