Peach & Sage Cobbler-Style Dessert
Cory Kobrinski, executive chef at Astoria Cafe & Market, re-imagines the crumbly familiar topping on classic cobblers with a Greek twist. By incorporating kataifi, thin strips of phyllo dough, the topping is crisp, yet lighter than a traditional approach. “It holds up better when mixed with the fruit so you get that crunchy texture with each bite,” says Kobrinski. “Sage adds complexity to the flavor and the custard helps tighten up the bake while also adding a nice creamy texture to each bite.”
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a large bowl, combine 1 pound peaches (pitted and cut into 1-inch cubes), 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 1 tablespoon bourbon, 1/4 teaspoon cornstarch, pinch of kosher salt, pinch fresh grated nutmeg and 1 teaspoon fresh chopped sage. Add 1/4 teaspoon orange blossom water and 1/4 teaspoon almond extract, optional. Stir well to combine. In a medium cast-iron pan, on medium-high heat, melt 1 tablespoon butter, then add peach mixture to pan and cook for 8-10 minutes or until peaches are semi-soft. Take off heat and set pan aside. In a small pot, combine 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup sugar, half a lemon, 1 cinnamon stick, 1/2 teaspoon cloves, 2 sage stems, and 1 macerated peach on medium heat. Bring to a simmer and continue to cook for 15 minutes. Take off heat and run through a strainer, collecting the syrup in a separate bowl. Allow syrup to cool and thicken slightly. Make custard by combining 2 eggs, 1/3 cup Greek yogurt, 1/3 cup canola oil, 1/3 cup sugar and 1/2 teaspoon baking powder in a mixing bowl. Stir well to combine then pour over peach filling in cast iron pan. Next, toss 4 ounces kataifi shredded filo dough with 2 tablespoons clarified butter until well dressed. Place kataifi on top of the peach and custard mixture. Press down lightly on kataifi to help soak into the mixture. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until kataifi is golden brown and custard is cooked through. Pull out of oven and immediately top with syrup. Let sit at room temperature for 45 minutes, then enjoy.
Thyme and Pepper Biscuit Blackberry Cobbler
This creation from Erica Coffee, executive chef at Snap Gourmet Foods and Catering, is a ripe hybrid of sweet and savory with the combination of thyme, pepper, blackberries and ground cinnamon in every bite. “Thyme adds an earthiness to the dish without taking away from the berries itself. The pepper adds a little bit of kick to it,” says Coffee. “Putting it in the biscuits helps keep the flavor components separate but also helps tie them together.”
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8-inch square baking dish. In a large saucepan, combine 24 ounces fresh blackberries, 1 cup granulated sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon. Cook and stir until mixture comes to a boil. Separately, combine 3 tablespoons cornstarch and 3/4 cups water until smooth and stir into fruit mixture. Bring to a boil. Cook and stir for 2-5 minutes or until thickened. Pour into prepared baking dish. In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder, zest of 1 lemon, 1 and 1/2 teaspoons black pepper, 1 and 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. Cut in 1/2 cup cold butter, grated or finely cubed, using a pastry blender or two forks until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in 1/2 to 1/3 cup buttermilk and 1/4 cup lemon juice until moistened. Using a tablespoon, drop biscuit topping onto hot berry mixture. Bake, uncovered, for 30-35 minutes or until filling is bubbly and topping is golden brown. Serve warm, with whipped topping or ice cream if desired.
Individual Flaky Crust Apple Cobbler
Shawnda Moye, owner of The Roaming Biscuit, uses flaky crust to top each single serving of her summertime dessert, which makes for easy cleanup. “Instead of scooping out from a dish, you have your own individual dessert, and it gives it a neater, nicer look as well,” says Moye. “That way you can’t go overboard and go in for a second scoop. You can top it with ice cream or whipped cream.”
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Whisk together 2 cups all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon sugar, and 1 teaspoon salt. Work in 16 tablespoons butter until the mixture holds together. Separately, mix 1 large egg and 2 tablespoons milk. Add it to the dough, mixing just until everything is cohesive. Divide the dough in half. Shape each half into a rough 3 x 5-inch rectangle or circle, smoothing the edges. Wrap in plastic or wax paper and refrigerate for 30 minutes. This will relax the gluten and firm up the dough a bit, making it easier to roll. (You can also refrigerate the dough for up to 2 days.) Let it rest for 15 to 20 minutes at room temperature before you roll it out. Roll dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Use round dough cutter to cut into circles. In a pot on the stove, combine 4 cups sliced and peeled apples, 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice, 1/2 cup white sugar, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon nutmeg, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1/2 teaspoon almond extract and 3 tablespoons butter. Bring to a slight boil, 5-7 minutes. Remove apples from the filling and place in the ramekins. Whisk in 2 teaspoons cornstarch to the filling and cook at low-to-medium heat for another 1-2 minutes. Filling will start to thicken. Evenly divide the filling into your ramekins. Top filling with cutout dough. Brush with 2 tablespoons milk and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons turbinado sugar divided evenly among all servings. Bake for 20-25 minutes.