Sunday, June 26, 2011

Berry Stained Hands

I have a love hate relationship with the property we live on. One thing I do love are the blackberries in the summer. Most of the bushes sit on the fringes of the woods but there are a lot back in there if you can get to them. Witt blazed through on the john deer and we got a nice bucket full.


Gypsy Slow Down


First order of business is a blackberry and basil cocktail.



Gypsy Slow Down


The rest of the berries will be for a yummy blackberry cobbler.



Gypsy Slow Down


For the cocktail, muddle five blackberries, four basil leaves, a teaspoon orange zest, juice of half an orange, juice of half a lemon, a splash of tonic water and an ounce or two of gin in a bowl.



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 Strain the juice into a glass (my shaker is missing...) and garnish with a blackberry, orange slice and basil leaf.


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Don't be afraid to drink it outside and take in the crisp berry flavors, oh la la.


Gypsy Slow Down


I am a chocolate girl but I can appreciate a good cobbler. I found a recipe for one in Rachel Ray's magazine that used cornmeal in the topping. I am always on the hunt for ways to make baking with whole wheat flour better and I thought adding cornmeal might give the topping some tenderness. But since she used regular flour and sugar there would be some experimentation. And since I only had one bushel of blackberries I was nervous. Nevertheless, I plunged onward, changed this and that, and oh my goodness it was. so. good. Fluffy and light as a cloud, even with lots of butter and cream (also why it was so good).

I had some blueberries from my mom so they went into the mix, too. 


Gypsy Slow Down


Gypsy Slow Down


Blackberry Cobbler 

For the topping:

1/3 cup yellow cornmeal
2/3 cup whole wheat flour
1/8 cup Stevia
1/2 stick butter, chilled
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Zest from one lemon
1/2 cup heavy cream

For the filling:

3 cups fresh blackberries 
1 cup fresh blueberries
3 tablespoons Stevia
2 tablespoons butter

Mix all the dry ingredients and the zest together in a bowl. With a grater, grate the butter into the bowl using the largest holes.  Gently stir to incorporate and place in the fridge while you jazz up the berries.

Bring the berries, butter and Stevia to a simmer on the stove top. Let cook, stirring gently, for about 4 minutes.

Add heavy cream to the flour and butter mixture, stirring just until it clumps up, being careful not to over mix. Grease a baking dish with butter and pour in berry mixture. Add topping in clumps all over the top. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the topping is nice and brown. Serve with whipped cream.


We took the cobbler to a lake near our house for an impromptu picnic. 


Gypsy Slow Down


Gypsy Slow Down

A little picnic, just for pie, and also some tuna salad and a glass of wine. 


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Vivre la berry!
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