Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Tennessee Mountain Cobbler

Tennessee Mountain Cobbler
Dorcas Annette Walker

There is something very cozy about a cobbler baking in the oven on a cold winter day. Winter is a great time to make up a cobbler, although cobblers fit in anytime throughout the year. I have often prepared a fruit cobbler as a quick dessert for unexpected company. Even picky eaters cannot resist a freshly baked cobbler. I have served my cobblers plain or topped with a scoop of ice cream. Either way a homemade fruit cobbler always brings a smile of delight when served warm from the oven.

Cobblers are a European tradition that originated in the American West during the second half of the nineteenth century when west-bound cooks adapted the traditional oven-baked pie recipes to dessert that could be cooked in Dutch ovens. They used a quick crust filled with whatever fruit was on hand. Early settlers were good at improvising favorite recipes when ingredients were not available. The first instance of the word cobbler in print was in 1859.

There are many variations of cobblers called by different names such as tart, torte, pandowdy, grunt, slump, buckles, crisp, croustade, bird’s nest pudding, or crow’s nest pudding all based on seasonal (fresh) or canned fruits. Cobblers are homemade and simple to make relying more on taste than preparation. As many fruits there are there is a recipe for a cobbler.

During the miles I have traveled to different parts of the United States I have eaten many kinds of cobblers, but none captures the taste buds as quickly as the Tennessee Mountain Cobbler served hot from an iron skillet. First the aroma wafting from the oven tantalizes one’s nose with a promise of a homemade dessert. When served the sight of the fruit filled, cake-like, golden brown dessert, with thickened fruit juice running everywhere makes one’s mouth water. Each warm bite is a culinary delight filling up the stomach until one is tempted to groan in satisfaction when the last mouthful is eaten.

The Tennessee Mountain Cobbler is a simple, easy-to-make, quick, Southern recipe that always turns out delicious. It is baked in an iron skillet surrounded with butter that ensures a crispy golden crust through which fruit juices ooze. First butter is melted and then the batter is poured on top. Next a quart of fruit is dumped in and, without stirring, baked. My Tennessee Mountain Cobbler recipe is a variation of the one-cup cobbler making it easy to remember. Preparation time takes five to ten minutes and this recipe serves six to eight people.

Tennessee Mountain Cobbler

In a 10 inch iron skillet melt one stick of butter.

Mix together:
1 c self-rising flour
1 c sugar
1 c milk

Pour batter over melted butter. Next dump one quart of canned fruit and juice of your choice (I used peaches for this recipe) on top of batter. Do not stir. Sprinkle cinnamon on top. Bake at 350ยบ for 45 minutes to 1 hour until crispy brown and a knife inserted in the cake part comes out clean. Let cool a little, then serve while still hot. May garnish with a scoop of ice cream!

Dorcas Annette Walker is a freelance writer, author, columnist, and photographer from Jamestown, TN. If you have any cooking tips or favorite recipes you are welcome to contact me by mail at: Dorcas Walker, 929 Wildwood Lane, Jamestown, TN 38556 or email me at: For more information about the Walker family and Dorcas’ books check out her website at: or htpp:// for other Creative Mountain Cookin recipes.


mgf1959 said...

I came across this recipe, "Tennessee Mountain Cobbler" by accident. It was a great hit with my family. I have made it 5 times this month of Feb.
It is simple and quick to make.
Great recipe!

Dorcas Annette Walker said...

So glad that you are enjoying my Tennesse Mountain Cobbler! The greatest thing about this cobbler is that is not only tastes great, but is easy to make. Enjoy!