Did I just hear you gasp? I hope so. Yes, I know, Berry Season has arrived and we’re all verklempt over it. Individual Blackberry Cobbler is a great desserts, but for a crowd, baking it in a casserole dish quickly turns it into a family-style version. The batter topping bakes to a crispy perfection, while the berry filling is simply sweet. Since I’m not a fan of sharing desserts, I prefer the individual version. Dessert sharing should never be “required“, after all.
What is Juneteenth?
What is Blackberry (or any type) of Cobbler?
Cobbler is a North American favorite- the peach version being the most popular. You’ll often find all sorts of cobblers served during the Juneteenth and Fourth of July holidays. Because it’s an un-fussy dessert that can be held at warm temperatures after baking, it’s a favorite. Cobblers are a great option if you find yourself drowning in fresh fruit this season.
Cobblers fall into the “clump cake” dessert category. Betties, buckles, dumps, and slumps are clump cakes as well. The topping is the only thing that makes them different. What makes cobbler and its kin different from a pie are their lack of bottom crusts. This particular recipe combines a thinner, crispier crust with the elements of a dough topping. The melding of the two makes for an even lighter dessert.
A baked cobbler’s less-than-perfect appearance should easily be forgiven. After all, the French name for these types of desserts is poupeton, which means “mess in a pan”. Bake your blackberry cobbler in an attractive dish, to make up for the lack of pizzazz.
What is in Blackberry Cobbler?
To make this recipe, you’ll need fresh (or frozen) blackberries. If you opt to use frozen berries, thaw and drain them of their juice before baking. Also, the amount of sugar will vary depending on how ripe your berries are. The sweeter the berry, the less sugar you’ll need. Speaking of sugar: to make the batter you’ll need flour, sugar, ginger, cinnamon, salt, and baking powder. To finish the batter: whole milk and melted butter.
For variety in making your cobbler, simply look to your favorite fruit. Little to no adjustments need to be made if you want to use a different fruit as the cobbler base. Just make sure the fruit is ripe and pitted (if necessary).
How do I know if my berries are sweet enough for making a cobbler?
While stationed in Fort Belvoir- in Alexandria, VA- we stumbled upon a blackberry patch on one of our daily walks. Unfortunately, we caught it towards the end of the season. Afterwards, it became our family’s mission to strip the bushes bare of each and every blackberry. The mission was an utter failure as the next year just so happened to be the only year those particular blackberries failed to ripen fully. Later on in the year, we received orders to move to Central Texas. So, yeah; blackberry hunters we weren’t.
Could we have picked the green berries? Yes, but they would’ve tasted like hot garbage. Berries that ripen on the vine are much sweeter than those that don’t- and that if they even ripen.
When choosing the perfect fruit- look for those that are dark and slightly soft. Not mushy, because that means it’s rotten; but not rock-hard and green, either. Taste the berry to see if it’s sweet. That sweetness determines the amount of sugar you’ll need to add- if any- to the berries themselves. If you find they’re too sour- like, pucker-factor sour- toss the blackberries with a quarter of a cup of granulated sugar. Let them sit for ten minutes while you prep the rest of your ingredients. If they’re sweet, there is no need to coat them in sugar prior to using here. In fact, you may want to reduce the amount of sugar used in the batter to 3/4s of a cup to compensate for their sweetness.
Grease the baking dish
First thing’s first, get your oven going. Set the temperature to 350°F.
Melt unsalted butter in one of the 8-9.5 oz ramekins in the microwave for 30 seconds. Continue to melt the butter in 30 second spurts until it’s completely melted. Melting the butter one of the ramekins you’ll later bake in saves dishes. I’m here to help your life.
Once the butter is melted, use a pastry brush to lightly grease the inside of the ramekins.
If you’re making a family-style version, lightly grease a 9″ x 13″ baking dish the same way.
This prevents the cobbler batter from sticking. Less sticking means more cobbler in your belly since you don’t lose any to the ramekin.
Fill the greased ramekins with a cup of blackberries. For the family-stye version, just dump all of the berries into your greased baking dish.
Place the ramekins on a quarter sheet pan after they’ve been filled with the blackberries.
I bake my blackberry cobblers on sheet pans to cut down on any messes. During baking, the cobblers will bubble over with blackberry juice- which is something we totally want to have. What you don’t want, however, is sugary juice burning inside your oven.
Set the sheet pan to the side while you prepare the cobbler batter.
How do I make a cobbler batter?
First, combine the dry ingredients together. Sift the dry mix together into a large mixing bowl, then set this bowl aside.
What’s great about this dry mix is that you can prep it a few days (or weeks) in advance and store it in the pantry. Whenever you have unexpected company show up, you can throw this dessert together in less than an hour and save the day. But, you should talk to your uninvited guests about showing up unannounced.
In a separate bowl, combine the whole milk and the rest of the butter. Whisk or stir to combine the two.
Just before you’re ready to bake, add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients.
Use a rubber spatula, or whisk, to stir just until the mixture comes together and no large lumps are visible in the batter. Don’t overmix because you don’t want to develop an excess of gluten. Gluten will create a tough, chewy topping instead of light, crispy one.
If you’re not planning to bake until later, wait to combine the batter. The baking powder loses rising power as it sits, so you want to bake the cobbler soon after mixing the batter.
Using a portion scoop, or a measuring cup, to scoop 3/4 cup of the batter over the berries in each ramekin. If you have any remaining batter, just divide it evenly amongst the ramekins. If you’re baking in one dish, just pour the entire cobbler mixture over the berries.
Once your blackberries are “cobbled”, sprinkle the remaining sugar over the batter. This, when baked, will create a crunchy surface on the cobblers. It is optional if you’re looking for a less-sweet dessert, though.
Try to avoid leaving clumps of sugar, on the surface of the blackberry cobbler. If the sugar looks stark white, or is piled up, use your fingertips to spread it around. Any undissolved sugar (as in the image below) won’t melt and you’ll have to brush it off after baking.
How long do I bake Blackberry Cobbler?
Give each cobbler a dusting of ground cinnamon and bake the cobblers for 45-50 minutes for ramekins, or 50-55 minutes for a larger dish.
If the cobblers grow too dark before the baking time has elapsed, cover them lightly with foil.
How do I know if my cobbler is baked?
The cobblers should be golden brown on top and the blackberry juice should bubble up and over the edges of the dish. That’s a great indication of whether or not they’re completely baked. That is also why those sheet pans are so important.
If a toothpick comes out clean, with only blackberry juice on it, they are done. On the other hand, if a toothpick comes out with white batter, they need more time to bake.
What do I serve with my Blackberry Cobbler?
I think there’s nothing better than a blackberry cobbler served under a scoop of Vanilla Frozen Custard, or ice cream. Although, any ice cream on top of these blackberry cobblers would be a great addition. Even on their own, this dessert is magnificent. But a la mode just makes them more magnificent-er.
A dollop of whipped cream is another way to garnish these beauts. Drizzling Crème Anglaise over the baked dessert would also taste lovely.
How do I store Blackberry Cobbler?
Once again, blackberry cobbler is room temperature friendly, so feel free to store them on the countertop. If you’re taking them to a BBQ, pack them in a large travel container and take them as is.
Store any leftovers- those you’ve cut into and served- in the fridge. Simply wrap the dish in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 3 days. You can most certainly freeze the baked cobblers. Just make sure your dish is freezer-safe.
When reheating cobbler, thaw (if needed) and heat until warmed through in the oven or microwave.
Pin this recipe for later, then get out there and celebrate summer deliciously!
Juneteenth Cookout Black Food Blogger Recipes:
The full list of participants at https://www.meikoandthedish.
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*I updated this post to give it more pizazz! *
- 9 tablespoons unsalted butter melted and separated
- 4 cups blackberries fresh or frozen*
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar separated
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon plus more for dusting (optional)
- 1 cup whole milk
- Preheat your oven to 350°F.
- Use 1 tablespoon of the melted butter to brush the inside of 4 9 1/2 oz ramekins. If you're making a family-style version, use a 9x13" baking dish instead of the ramekins and grease it the same way.
- Fill each ramekin with 1 cup of blackberries. For the family-stye version, dump all of the berries into your greased baking dish. Place the baking dish(es) on a quarter sheet pan.
Make the Cobbler Batter
- Sift 1 cup of the sugar, the flour, baking powder, ginger, salt, and cinnamon together into a large mixing bowl.
- In a separate bowl, stir together the milk and the remaining melted butter. Stir together the wet and dry ingredients using a rubber spatula, or whisk. Mix just until the batter comes together and no large lumps remain.
- Use a 3 ounce portion scoop, or a 3/4 measuring cup, to scoop the batter over the berries in each ramekin. If you're baking in one dish, just pour the entire mixture over the berries.
Bake the Blackberry Cobblers
- Divide the remaining sugar equally and sprinkle each cobbler with the sugar. For the family style, sprinkle the sugar evenly over the surface of the batter.
- Sprinkle a dusting of ground cinnamon over the top(s) of the cobbler and bake for 40-45 minutes (ramekins), or 50-55 minutes (family style), or until the tops are a deep golden brown, and the blackberry filling begins to bubble up.
- Remove the cobbler(s) from the oven and allow to cool slightly before enjoying. Serve alone or with your favorite ice cream.
- If your blackberries are too sour, toss them in a quarter of a cup of granulated sugar (not listed in the recipe). Let them sit for ten minutes while you prep the rest of your ingredients. Drain before using.
- if you're using frozen berries: thaw, then drain, the berries prior to using
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Here are some other great toppings for this dessert: