Sunny Peach Cobbler
It was my plan to share out yet another zucchini recipe today, as the number of giant green squash logs squatting in my fridge seems to remain constant in spite of continually cooking them these days. Knowing several courgette concoctions are coming down the pipeline, though, it seemed a sensible time for a break in the flow of squash onslaught. Plus, I've been getting that burning-the-candle-at-both-ends jittery feeling coursing from my brain through to my toes, and I needed something sunshiny and bright to inject a new burst of energy. It's Back to School time again, already. The summer washed away in a blink, like the tide frothing in my head as my thoughts turn automatically and prematurely to autumn. It seems kind of silly, when the temperatures are still regularly topping 95 dry degrees F out here, but when school starts, my whole body begins to settle into fall mode. Sharpened pencils evoke a mindset that encompasses crisp mornings and changing leaves, wood smoke and apple cider.
Not to say there isn't a certain forceful resistance. I've never been overly fond of change I can't control for myself, and that even includes the turning of the seasons, to a point. Every year at this time, for instance, all the industriousness and early rising of summer weeks briefly give way to utter listlessness, and drowning in girlish denial. I spend a week indulging in [fantasy of choice...this year it was the Twilight saga] while avoiding work, knowing that this annual phase will quickly pass, but at the same time worrying I'll be enshrouded and stagnated by it forever. I guess it doesn't matter how long you've been in school, as a student or a teacher, those jitters never really go away. Maybe we'd be more upset than relieved if they did.
Last week, my little sister Laura came to visit. I was a little anxious beforehand that I'd be awful, stress-riddled companionship given her stay was the week before our official callback to school, but it was so much fun getting to spend time with her; and, having Laura here probably kept the usual nervous anticipation for the new year at bay more than the other way around. We went hiking in the mountains, ambled around Boulder, and ate healthy dim sum we're both still talking about.
I had a load of ripe, sunny peaches, yellow and white, that would be beyond shameful to waste, so one night we made this exquisite, somewhat lightened cobbler. Like just about any stone fruit recipe I've made all summer, we took easy but super toothsome shortcuts, such as not bothering to peel the fruit, and keeping things simple. Speaking of KISS, I should just stop writing, right now. But of course I had to entertain this burst of sappy sentiment that somehow amuses me. Because it occurred to me just now, the approach to this recipe is what I need to bear in mind this week, this year of strained and limited resources, in teaching: simplifying prep does not equate to cutting quality when you're meeting the end goal; do not waste precious resources; and, especially for Kindergarten, warm and sweet can be good for you, and invites love and lingering. That's my little peachy smile burst for the day. I think you'll like the cobbler better. : )
- (Roughly) 5 pounds peaches, peeled, pitted, and sliced
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/3 cup raw sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 cup whole wheat (or white) pastry flour
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/3 cup skim milk
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- *optional: extra turbinado sugar for dusting biscuit tops
- Place peaches in a large bowl. Drizzle with lemon juice and toss. Add 1/3 cup raw sugar and cinnamon and stir to combine.
- Place fruit mixture in a 9 x 13 baking dish and bake at 400 F for 20-25 minutes.
- While the peach mixture is baking, prepare the topping: whisk the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, milk, olive oil, ginger and vanilla (we used the same bowl as the fruit, just being lazy).
- Remove the fruit filling from the oven and drop spoonfuls of the topping batter evenly over the pan.
- Return to the oven and bake a further 20 minutes. If desired, sprinkle a little turbinado sugar over the topping while the cobbler is still warm.