Georgia – Peach Cobbler

Since it is peach season, we decided to travel to Georgia. The oficial state fruit is peaches. According to Wikipedia, peaches were introduced to Georgia by Franciscan Monks as an alternative to cotton. Most people consider peaches from Georgia some of the best tasting there are. What better way to enjoy them than the classic southern dessert, peach cobbler!

Most people consider a cobbler to be a combination of pie, cake and/or biscuits. Our recipe is more like a pie/cake combination with cake batter poured over fruit and baked. We like this recipe as it is pretty simple and in the summer (aka peach season), it is helpful to have something that doesn’t take too much time to prepare when it can be so hot outside.

It seems that cobblers in general originate in the New England region at the time of British Colonization. Their ease in preparation and flexibility in ingredients might well have appealed to the cooks of the day. In the US, there are many variations of this type of dish, both savory and sweet. Whether it is called a cobbler, grunt, slump, buckle or Betty, they are all delicious. I think there is some serious research to be had to find out the origins of all these names, but I will leave that for another day…
This recipe is an adaptation of one from my grandmother and I think of her whenever I make it.

Peach Cobbler

4 c peaches, peeled, pitted and cut into 1 inch pieces.
1 T cornstarch

1 c flour
1 c sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 t salt
1 t cinnamon

1/2 c milk
1 egg
1/4 c butter, melted and cooled
2 t vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 F.
Combine peaches with the cornstarch and place into an 8 inch square baking pan.
In a medium bowl, mix all the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, cinnamon, salt and baking powder) with a whisk.
In a separate bowl, lightly beat the egg and then add the milk, butter and vanilla. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
Spoon the batter over the peaches, trying to cover all of the fruit.
Bake at 350 F for 35 minutes. It is best when eaten warm, but also reheats well in the microwave.

Tip: Yes, peeling peaches is a bit of pain. Here is the easiest way I know. Make a cross slit with a paring knife on the bottom of the peach. Immerse in boiling water for 2 minutes. Remove and directly place into an ice water bath. After the peach has cooled (about 3 minutes), remove the peach from the ice water bath and peel. Be careful not to leave the peach in the boiling water too long (it will start to cook) or in the ice water bath too long (it will get soggy).