I’ve been so hyped up about July being National Ice Cream Month, that I’ve somewhat neglected another very deserving food holiday – National Blueberry Month! While I did bake up a wonderful blueberry-lemon buttermilk bundt cake early on in the month, I’ve been craving a serious blueberry dessert. Something where the blueberries take center stage and really shine. You can’t get much more all-star status than a cobbler. Sure, there are some biscuits floating on top, but the blueberries don’t have to compete with pie crust for attention and they’re not getting baked into a batter for a greater purpose. Just blueberries, in all of their plump, deep purple glory. This is one absolutely phenomenal dessert that’s easy to make and a fabulous celebration of summer and the wonderful fresh fruit that it provides.
I’ve been trying to make a conscious effort to use fresh produce as much as possible during its peak season. July means the most wonderful, plumpest blueberries. It’s also the time of year when you’ll see many “pick-your-own” advertisements popping up at farms and orchards. That means you can grab your buckets and bushels and wander into the fields to pick blueberries ’til your heart’s content. Whether you want to make jam, cobblers, crisps, pies, or freeze the blueberries for your morning oatmeal, now is the time to stock up on those blue beauties!
I love how insanely easy this dessert is to make and how equally wonderful it is to eat. You only need a total of 3 bowls to prepare this, a whisk, a spoon and a fork. Easy as pie… except, easier.
The resulting dessert is an amazing combination of cooked-down blueberries in a thick, warm sauce topped with dollops of crunchy biscuits sprinkled with a cinnamon-sugar topping. The blueberry filling is very slightly sweetened and spiked with a little bit of lemon zest and juice. The flavors all dance together superbly… they absolutely deserve a stage!
You probably don’t need me to tell you that a big ol’ scoop of vanilla ice cream on top of this cobbler is a fantastic idea. It’s a sin to eat any type of fruit-based pie, crisp, crumble or cobbler without a huge scoop of ice cream. A sin, I tell you! I’m sure you can find that written down in a food bible somewhere ;-)
What’s your favorite type of crisp/cobbler/crumble?
For the Filling:
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- Pinch ground cinnamon
- Pinch salt
- 30 ounces (6 cups) blueberries
- 1½ teaspoons grated lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
For the Biscuit Topping:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons yellow cornmeal
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup buttermilk
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
For the Cinnamon-Sugar:
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- Pinch ground cinnamon
- Making the Filling: Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.
- Whisk the sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon and salt together in a large bowl. Add the blueberries and mix gently until evenly coated; add lemon zest and juice and mix to combine. Transfer the berry mixture to a 9-inch deep-dish pie plate or an 8-inch square baking dish. Place the plate on the prepared baking sheet, and bake until the filling is hot and bubbling around the edges, about 25 minutes.
- Make the Biscuit Topping: Meanwhile, whisk the flour, sugar, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a large bowl. Whisk the buttermilk, melted butter and vanilla together in a small bowl. Combine the sugar and cinnamon in a small cup and set aside. One minute before the blueberries come out of the oven, add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until just combined and no dry pockets remain.
- Assemble and Bake: Remove the blueberries from the oven; increase the oven temperature to 425 degrees F. Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces and place on the hot filling, spacing them at least ½-inch apart (they should not be touching). Sprinkle each mound of dough evenly with the cinnamon sugar.
- Bake until the filling is bubbling and the biscuits are golden brown on top and cooked through, 15 to 18 minutes, rotating the pie plate halfway through baking. Transfer the pie plate to a wire rack and let cool for 20 minutes; serve warm.