Rhubarb-Strawberry Cobbler (with Fresh Thyme, Orange Zest, and Port!)

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Rhubarb at the farmers market always excites me.  I grew up with a rhubarb patch in our garden, and my mom would always make rhubarb pie for my dad.  There was something about the tartness of the stalks mixed with the sweetness of the sugar that always stuck with me.

Rhubarb is one of those ingredients that can be mixed with almost any fruit and thrown into a cobbler, pie, or crisp and taste delicious.  This time, I chose to go with the classic pairing of rhubarb and strawberry.  But with a couple of my own additions, natch.

Cobblers are so easy that I don’t know why I don’t make one every week.  How could you go wrong with sweet, warm fruit under a buttery biscuit topping??

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All that is required of you is some fresh fruit and a few other ingredients, and wham! you have cobbler.  Listen, go out and pick up some rhubarb and strawberries from the farmers (or other) market and get started.  You’ll be done before you know it and enjoying warm cobbler on your patio while you listen to the summer birds sing your praises!

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If you’re not inclined to make a cobbler topping, just throw together some oats and/or flour with a little brown sugar and butter for a crisp topping.  Go nuts, this is your dessert!

yum

Rhubarb-Strawberry Cobbler (with Fresh Thyme, Orange Zest, and Port!)

For filling:

3 1/2 cups chopped rhubarb (be sure to remove stringy outer layer on the large stalks
2 cups fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
1/2 cup granulated sugar (I used organic pure cane sugar, but use what you have)
2 tablespoons quick cooking tapioca
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, minced
the zest from one small orange
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons tawny port
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

For the cobbler crust:

2 tablespoons granulated sugar (again, I used organic pure cane sugar)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup milk (I used vanilla soy milk)
1 egg, lightly beaten

Method:

Preheat oven to 350ºF.  Line a baking sheet with a Silpat or parchment paper to catch any drips that might bubble over during baking.

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients for the filling and mix well.  Allow to stand, stirring occasionally, for at least 30 minutes until the fruit gives off some of its juices.

In another bowl, combine the sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt.  Using a pastry cutter or two knives (or your fingers) work the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.  Stir in the milk and egg until moistened.

Pour fruit into a 2-quart casserole dish (or individual dishes if you’re making individual cobblers).  Drop the cobbler batter evenly onto the fruit.  Sprinkle top with sugar and place casserole dish on prepared baking sheet.

Bake in oven for 35-40 minutes until fruit is bubbling and crust is golden brown and baked through.

It’s best served warm, but it’s also quite nice at room temperature or even right out of the fridge.  Basically, it’s delicious any way you eat it.  Feel free to plop some whipped cream or vanilla ice cream on it as well.  Enjoy!

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