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Mix and match fruit in this summer cobbler

Recipe: Try this classic with cherries, peaches or other favorites

The dark cherries have colored the peaches, but they're in there, adding flavor and texture.

The dark cherries have colored the peaches, but they're in there, adding flavor and texture. Debbie Arrington

Fruit for cobbler in a glass measuring cup
Cherries and peaches make a good pairing.

This cobbler makes the most of summer stone fruit and berries. It mixes and matches what’s on hand. For example, I used two yellow peaches and a pound of late cherries. Colorwise, the peaches tended to blend in with all the red cherry juice, but their flavor and texture added their own distinct plus.

The crust is like sugary drop biscuits. Make sure your baking dish is deep enough for the bubbling fruit as it cooks. When serving, drizzle some of the fruit syrup over the topping. Ice cream or whipped cream is optional.

Summer fruit cobbler

Serves 6

Ingredients:

4 cups fruit (peaches, nectarines, cherries, apricots, strawberries, berries, etc.), pitted

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup all-purpose flour

½ cup sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

¼ cup butter

1/3 to ½ cup buttermilk or sour milk

Butter for baking dish

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Casserole with baked fruit cobbler
After baking, let the cobbler cool.

Prepare fruit. Peeling is optional. Cut larger fruit into 1-inch pieces. Halve cherries and strawberries. Mix fruit with brown sugar; set aside.

In a medium bowl, sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Chop butter into small pieces, then blend it into dry ingredients with a fork, pastry blender or two knives. Add just enough buttermilk or sour milk to form a thick sticky dough.

Butter a 2-quart casserole dish. Pour fruit mixture into the buttered dish.

With two spoons, scoop dough into six golf ball-size pieces and place them on top of fruit, spacing dough pieces evenly apart.

Bake cobbler at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until crust is golden and fruit is bubbly. Remove from oven and let cool at least 20 to 30 minutes.

Serve warm with ice cream or whipped cream, of desired.

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Garden Checklist for week of May 19

Temperatures will be a bit higher than normal in the afternoons this week. Take care of chores early in the day – then enjoy the afternoon. It’s time to smell the roses.

* Plant, plant, plant! It’s prime planting season in the Sacramento area. If you haven’t already, it’s time to set out those tomato transplants along with peppers and eggplants. Pinch off any flowers on new transplants to make them concentrate on establishing roots instead of setting premature fruit.

* Direct-seed melons, cucumbers, summer squash, corn, radishes, pumpkins and annual herbs such as basil.

* Harvest cabbage, lettuce, peas and green onions.

* In the flower garden, direct-seed sunflowers, cosmos, salvia, zinnias, marigolds, celosia and asters.

* Plant dahlia tubers. Other perennials to set out include verbena, coreopsis, coneflower and astilbe.

* Transplant petunias, marigolds and perennial flowers such as astilbe, columbine, coneflowers, coreopsis, dahlias, rudbeckia and verbena.

* Keep an eye out for slugs, snails, earwigs and aphids that want to dine on tender new growth.

* Feed summer bloomers with a balanced fertilizer.

* For continued bloom, cut off spent flowers on roses as well as other flowering plants.

* Don’t forget to water. Seedlings need moisture. Deep watering will help build strong roots and healthy plants.

* Add mulch to the garden to help keep that precious water from evaporating. Mulch also cuts down on weeds. But don’t let it mound around the stems or trunks of trees or shrubs. Leave about a 6-inch to 1-foot circle to avoid crown rot or other problems.

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