My mom was a wonderful cook. She could throw a meal together in 20 minutes and it would taste like she spent all day preparing it. We marveled at the speed and versatility she showed in the kitchen.
When she passed away a few years ago I was blessed to get her recipe collection. Well, blessed and cursed. She had half of her pantry filled with cookbooks, magazines, index card file boxes, accordion files, shoe boxes, and binders, and they were all stuffed full with recipes. I didn’t have room for them all, so the curse was in having to decide what to keep and what to give away.
After much thought, I settled on a scientific method of deciding which recipes to keep. My mom was a very messy cook (I inherited that quality), so if the recipe was stained and dirty, and appeared well used, I kept it. If the recipe was in good shape, it probably didn't get used much, so out it went.
This method worked on most of the recipes, except for the recipes that were written by mom in her own hand. I couldn't part with the ones bearing her handwriting. It is a connection that's important to me. I continue to feel her presence in the kitchen when I’m following one of her handwritten recipes. I'm not ready to let that feeling go. The handwritten recipes stayed in the "keeper" stack.
This peach cobbler recipe was on one of those handwritten and stained recipe cards. What I like about this cobbler is that it is easy, easy, easy... I can still see my mom's hands whipping it up in record time.
4 pounds peaches, peeled, pitted, and cut into bite-sized chunks 1 tsp. cinnamon 2 Tbsp. brown sugar 2 Tbsp. granulated sugar 1 tsp. lemon juice
1 cup flour ½ cup sugar ½ tsp salt ½ cup (1 stick) cold butter, cut into 8 pieces
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Butter 2-quart baking dish. Mix peaches, cinnamon, 2 Tbsp. brown sugar, 2 Tbsp. granulated sugar, and lemon juice together and pour into buttered dish.
In a food processor, mix together ½ cup sugar, salt, and flour until blended. Add slices of butter to processor and pulse until mixture resembles wet sand. Sprinkle crumbly mixture evenly over peaches. Bake until crust is golden brown, about 45-50 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream, if desired.