Monday, August 9, 2010

Peach Cobbler

Peach Cobbler

I always look forward to peach season.  I had been planning to bake an easy cobbler I used to make years ago.  Glancing at the card I dug up from my recipe box, one thing bugged me: The recipe listed boiling water as an ingredient for the biscuit topping.  Don't cookbooks and cooking shows endlessly preach the virtues of cold biscuit ingredients for maximum puff and flakiness?  I mean, the recipe worked great all those years ago and family and friends loved it, but I felt it was time for a new recipe.  This one's almost as easy.  And it was a bonus that it called for buttermilk, which I had left over from another recipe. 

Peach Cobbler Collage
I made the cobblers in ramekins and mini-pie dishes because the baking dish I pulled out looked too large for the filling. Also, I just love baked goods in mini form. It wasn't until I popped them in the oven that I realized the recipe didn't call for any cinnamon, nutmeg, or other spices. My old recipe card didn't either. I know some people think cinnamon gets in the way of unadulterated summer peach or autumn apple flavors... what do you think? In the end it tasted great, with summery peach sweetness and a buttery biscuit topping. And yet, I really could have done with a hit of cinnamon, and I was wondering if I preferred the old biscuit topping after all. That's life, huh? Especially for picky ol' me.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


I think this satay would make my Malaysia-born mom proud.  I love ordering it in restaurants, dipping the perfectly grilled strips of meat into a peanut sauce.  The recipe calls for chicken, but my red meat-lover self used beef; both are common.  The sauce takes some time to put together but is great and complex, not like those flat, sugary peanut sauces you find in chain restaurants.

Some of the ingredients, like tamarind, were unusual for me, but don't let that put you off.  Despite my heritage I don't cook a lot of Malaysian, Singaporean, or Chinese food, since I learned to cook on my own rather than from my mom.  But I've been picking up a dish here and there, and getting less intimidated with each one.

Satay on grill
One other minor note: some of the recipe instructions tell you to process ingredients to a smooth paste, but don't knock yourself out.  Ginger and lemongrass are very fibrous, so my spice paste was a bit chunky and stringy.  In the end, though, it all smells great on the grill.