Australians are undeniably lucky when it comes to fruit produce. We are deep in winter, yet, lovely red and vibrant rhubarb and strawberries are available. Together with the some gorgeous sunny days of late, they remind me of summer. Only better without that scorching heat.
When I bought rhubarb from the market last week, I thought of doing something extra special with the veg. A lot of ideas (pie, cheesecake, mousse etc.), but then I settled on a simple cobbler which I chanced upon Jamie´s blog. Nothing fancy, just a simple dessert that lets the fruit shine.
For a lot of you, simple desserts like this are part of growing up. Johanna recently shared some wonderful memories of her grandmother, together with a fabulous looking rhubarb and apple sponge cake. For me, someone with Asian background, baked goods are not part of my childhood. But I and my family here embrace these with much love, and slowly making them part of our family tradition.
So here is the recipe that I´ve adapted. I´m not a big fan of rose water, but the floral scent goes particularly well with rhubarb and strawberries.
Adapted from Doriee Greenspan via Life´s a feast
For the filling:
300g-400g fresh strawberries, washed and quartered
3 – 4 fat stalks rhubarb, trimmed, peeled and cut into ½-inch slices
2/3 cup sugar * (Adjust depending on the sourness of your fruits)
1 Tbs cornstarch
1/2 tbp to 1tbp rose water, to taste
For the cobbler dough:
1 + 1/2 cup plain flour
3 Tbs packed light brown sugar
2 tsps baking powder
½ tsp salt
90g unsalted cold butter, cubed
½ cup whole milk
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Butter an 8-inch square baking dish.
Prepare the filling:
Mix the prepared strawberries and rhubarb together in a large bowl. Sift the cornstarch over the sugar and stir to combine. Sprinkle over the fruit and toss until the dry ingredients are evenly coating the fruit. Toss the fruit often while you prepare the cobbler dough.
Prepare the cobbler dough:
Put both flours, the brown sugar, baking powder, salt in a large bowl. Stir or whisk to blend. Add the cubes of butter and, using only your fingertips, quickly rub the butter into the dry ingredients until incorporated and the mixture resembles coarse meal or wet sand. Working very quickly, add the milk and stir with a spoon or fork until well incorporated and you have a smooth dough. The dough should be light and fluffy, so don´t overwork.
Pour the prepared fruit into the buttered baking dish. Using a tablespoon, place equal-sized heaping tablespoons of dough in rows on top of the fruit.
Baking Bake for 35 – 45 minutes until the cobbler dough is puffed up and golden and baked through. The fruit should have created a thick juice which will be bubbling up around the puffs of dough when it is done.
Serve warm, at room temperature or even chilled with cream or custard. I served the cobbler with rose-scented honey sweetened light cream.