It’s official; summer’s over (cue sad face). And with the cold stretch of wintry weather we’ve had this past week, all I’ve wanted to do is to hibernate: stay inside where it’s warm, beside the heater. No, make that the oven.


Because what better way to use one’s hibernation than to make a warming dessert?


Gather ripe blood plums, leftovers from summer’s bounty…


Add some of new season’s apples and pears, some sugar and spice…


And cook them up together to create a slightly tart, not overly sweet fruit base for our cobbler.


Cream butter and sugar; adding flour and milk to the mix.


Spread cake dough into greased baking dish and cover with fruit.


Sprinkle with sugar, or better yet, ask your eager helper to do it for you!


Bake until fruit is magenta and bubbly and cake is risen and brown.


Devour with glee (after first having taken copious photos of the beautiful mess)!


Essie’s Cobbler
Crust begins on the bottom, and ends on top. Consistency of cobbler varies depending on variety of fruit and amount of juice, but still tastes delicious.

Serves 6-8

¼ cup butter or margarine, softened
½ cup golden caster sugar
1 cup plain (all-purpose) flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
Pinch salt
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
½ cup milk
1-2 tablespoons golden caster sugar, extra
½ cup fruit juice*

Prepare fruit first by washing and removing core/stones/pit. I used 450g (1 lb) blood plums, an apple, a pear and some frozen raspberries. Stew with one tablespoon of sugar, a splash of water, 3 bruised cardamom pods and a cinnamon stick. Simmer until softened (5-10 minutes) and then remove from heat. Discard spices. You will need 2 cups of stewed fruit.

Preheat oven to 180degC/350degF. Grease a 10×5 inch or 9×9 inch (2-litre capacity) baking pan.

Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl. Sift together in a separate bowl the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon (if using). Add dry ingredients to creamed mixture alternately with milk. Mix until smooth.

Pour batter into greased baking pan. Spoon over two cups of stewed fruit. Sprinkle with extra sugar and then pour over fruit juice*. Bake 45-50 minutes. Serve warm with yoghurt, cream or ice cream.

*The original recipe called for 1 cup of fruit juice, but I baulked at that and added less. It still turned out fine!

Adapted from the More with Less cookbook by Doris Janzen Longacre

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