Apple pie always gets the shout-out as our national dessert, but to my mind cobbler is just as American. These fruit and pastry desserts — and regional variations like pandowdies, grunts, slumps, buckles, sonkers and crisps — were created by early American settlers who turned to the simple ingredients they had on hand to create tasty homemade desserts. This child-friendly classic has a crunchy texture that is delicious served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
3 tbsp. granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
6 tbsp. (3/4 stick) cold unsalted butter cut into small pieces
1 cup buttermilk
1 vanilla bean
1/2 cup honey
Zest of 1 lemon
2 tbsp. cornstarch
1/2 cup dry red wine
2 cups dried sour cherries
2 cups fresh raspberries
2 cups strawberries hulled and cut in half
3 tsp. confectioners' sugar
Preheat the oven to 400° F.
Stir together the flour, granulated sugar, 4 tablespoons of the brown sugar, baking powder and baking soda, salt cardamom and cinnamon. Add the butter and blend with a pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the buttermilk and stir with a fork until a dough forms.
Divide the dough into 10 pieces and pat each into a 2-inch patty. Arrange on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake until the biscuits are golden, about 15 minutes.
In a medium bowl combine the vanilla bean and seeds, honey, lemon zest and cornstarch. Set aside. In a medium saucepan over medium heat bring the red wine to a boil. Stir in the honey mixture and reduce heat to a simmer; cook until the mixture thickens slightly, stirring continuously, about 2 minutes. Stir in the cherries, raspberries, strawberries, and 1/2 cup of the brown sugar and cook until the sugar dissolves, another 3 minutes. Remove from heat and discard the pod.
Butter a 4-ounce ramekin. Place 5 of the biscuits in the bottom of the baking dish.
Spoon the berry filling over the biscuits and crumble the remaining 5 biscuits over the top. Bake until bubbling, about 10-15 minutes.