Blackberry Memories

When we were kids, Mom and Dad would take off in the summer for one of their golf vacations, leaving frail Grandma Dolly at the house to watch over the six rowdy Brooks kids. There, she’d commandeer the sofa in the downstairs playroom, watch TV, drink tea from a tiny china cup, smoke cigarettes and bark orders at us all day long. Man, did we ever mind that little woman. In later years, Mom and Dad would head off on more golf vacations and send Janna and I off to Camp Skyline Ranch in Mentone, Ala. for a month. From both of these experiences, blackberry cobbler became a lifetime memory. On days when Grandma Dolly wanted to kick us out of the house, she’d send us in search of blackberries, with the promise of a cobbler at the end of the day. We’d come back late in the afternoon…tired, dirty, scratched up and, oh, so happy with our bucket of berries…then anxiously watch her make the cobbler, then the frosting, before we’d gobble it all down in one sitting. When Camp Skyline’s two cooking matriarchs Miss Sophie and Miss Anna were in good moods, my fellow campers and I would shyly sneak up to their cabin door with a basket full of just-picked berries, hoping, really hoping, they’d make a big ol’ cobbler that night for dessert.

Summer always brings me back to these memories. And while I can’t recall the exact recipes that Grandma Dolly or Sophie and Anna used, I certainly remember lovingly the first taste of those hot, juicy cobblers. So, after scouring recipes to try and find a close match, here’s a recipe we put together that we’re calling:

Blackberry Memories Cobbler

Ingredients:

  • 3-4 cups fresh blackberries
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Powdered sugar frosting (recipe follows)

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 375°. Place blackberries in a lightly greased 8-inch square baking dish. Squeeze a half-lemon over the berries. Stir together egg, sugar, flour, 1 tablespoon melted butter, and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla in a medium bowl until mixture resembles coarse meal. Sprinkle/place over fruit. Drizzle remaining melted butter over topping. Bake for 35 minutes or until lightly browned and bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes. Serve in small bowls, drizzling the powdered sugar frosting over the cobbler (or put a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top). Serve warm.

Powdered Sugar Frosting:
1 1/2  tablespoon water
1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

This made us so happy.
Our friend Anne said it was one of the best desserts she’s ever had. 🙂

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