Robin’s Super Easy Cobbler

My friend shared with me a recipe for super easy blackberry cobbler.  I believe she got it from her Grandmother.  It’s so easy anyone can do it!  If you can’t make this recipe, then you shouldn’t be allowed near a kitchen!

First, melt the butter and place it in a baking dish.  I choose to use a glass dish and I just melt the butter by putting the butter in the dish and microwaving for 15 seconds.

Next, mix the batter in a bowl per the recipe below and then poor the batter on top of the butter in your baking dish.

Then sprinkle sugar over the blackberries and put them on top of the batter in the dish.

Bake it and that’s it!

Robin’s Super Easy Blackberry Cobbler
4 Cups Blackberries(about 2 pints)
1 Cup Flour
1 Cup Sugar and Extra to Sprinkle
1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 Stick of Butter or Margarine

Preheat the oven to 350. Sprinkle some sugar on the berries and set aside.  Combine flour, sugar and baking powder in a bowl and whisk together.  Pour in enough milk to make a thin batter (about the consistency of pancake batter) about 1/2 cup usually.  Melt the butter in a small baking dish.  Pour the batter on top of the butter.  Place the fruit on top last.  Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

Wild Plum Jam

I grew up living outside of a small town “in the country” as we say…meaning way outside of the town on dirt roads.  A grove of wild plum trees grew near the farm where I lived.  For many years I made plum jelly from those wild plums and developed my own recipe (albeit a very simple recipe).  When I moved into my current home, I was pleased to learn we owned a plum tree.  Here is my recipe for wild plum (or domesticated plum) jam.

If you have never made jams or jellies before, I would suggest researching the topic a bit before trying it for the first time.  It’s not hard, but it’s best to be well educated on the topic as as to avoid any oops moments resulting in someone getting ill. ;)

The easiest way to prepare the plums for processing is to “blanch” them.  Prepare a pot of boiling water and two bowls.  Fill one bowl with ice water.

Place several plums in the boiling water until the skin around them slits open.  Then scoop them out and place them into the ice bath to cool.  Then peal off the skins and slice the fruit away from the pit and leave your discards (skins and pits) in the second bowl.  I place the pulp of the fruit directly into a measuring cup until I have gathered enough.  It requires 8 cups for this jam recipe.

After you have acquired all the pulp you need, use two large pots to start the canning process.  Put the pulp into one pot to cook and follow the recipe below.  In the other pot, fill it 1/2 full with water and start it to boil.

Place your new jars and lids into the boiling water for a minute or two to sterilize them.  Remove them using tongs and set aside.  Do this right before you are ready to fill them with your fruit mixture so the jars are still hot.  It is best to have the jars hot when you fill them just in case the glass might break from a big temperature difference between cold jars and hot jam.

Fill the jars up to 1/8 inch below the rim.  I use a measuring cup to dip out the jam and pour it into the jars.  No matter what method you use, it’s messy.  Put on the bottom of the lid and then screw on the top of the lid using hot pads so you don’t burn yourself.

Place the filled and sealed jars into the boiling water.  Wait for the water to return to a boil and then let them process for 2 minutes.  Using canning tongs, remove the hot jars from the water and set aside to cool.  If they have been processed correctly, within a minute or two you will hear popping sounds as the lids seal air-tight.  Wait 5 minutes and then check the tops of each can by pressing your finger down on them.  If the lid has movement, return the can to the boiling water for 2 more minutes.  Let the errant jar cool again, this time 10 minutes and check again.  I generally have 1 or 2 jars acting bullheaded about sealing but every time it has either been my impatience and tested them too early before they cooled enough to seal, or it sealed after the second water-bath.

Make sure your boiling water covers the tops of the jars.

And there you are, a very simple canning recipe for wonderful sweet but tart jam.

Wild Plum Jam
8 Cups Wild Plum Pulp
7 Cups Sugar
1 Package Fruit Pectin
1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice
12 8oz Canning Jars and Lids

Blanch the plums by placing them in boiling water until the skins split.  Move them to cold water bath to cool.  Remove the skins and pits and measure the fruit to 8 cups.  Put the fruit into a large pot and cook for 10 minutes at a low boil.  Add the sugar, pectin and lemon juice and return to a boil for 1 minute.  While the plums are cooking, boil to sterilize the jars and lids and set them aside.  Fill the jars up to 1/8 inch from the rims and then seal.  Put the sealed jars into the boiling water bath and process for 2 minutes.  Using canning tongs, remove the jars and set aside to cool.  After 5 minutes check the seal by pushing down on the top of the jar with a finger.  If the lid moves, reprocess the jar for 2 more minutes in the boiling water.

Honeydew Champagne Spritzer

I needed to make use of a honeydew melon and what better way to do it than with alcohol.  So I made this up on the fly!

Honeydew Champagne Spritzer
1 Part Honeydew Juice (I used a juicer with the melon pulp)
1 Part Champagne
Splash Midori

Fill the glass half-full with champagne first then add a Midori splash then fill with Honeydew juice.  It bubbles and if you do it in the correct order a lot less fizzing will occur.

Frozen Watermelon Lemonade Treat

I saw this treat some time ago on Stumble Upon and wanted to try it.  The original link is below and my recipe is different from their recipe but the technique is the same so be sure to visit their page.

My version is watermelon lemonade flavor.

Scoop out all the insides and process it in a food processor until smooth.  Keep the rinds and place them in the freezer while the frozen lemonade is being made.

Place in pot with the water, lemon and sugar.  Boil for 2-3 minutes until the sugar is melted and everything is incorporated.  Place into a bowl and put into the refrigerator until it is completely cool.

After the watermelon lemonade is cooled, freeze it in an ice cream freezer per the instructions.  To make it appear more realistic, I cut the seed pieces off of two blackberries and stirred them into the frozen lemonade.  The original posting used mini chocolate chips.  Or you can leave it without any “seeds”.  Fill the mixture back into the frozen rinds.

Place them back into the freezer until they are frozen solid, a few hours.  If you cut into them too early, the slush will run out and there isn’t a second chance to do it again.  After they are frozen, use a big sharp knife to cut them into pieces.

Link to original:

My version:

Frozen Watermelon Lemonade Treat
1 Small Watermelon
1/2 Cup Sugar
1 Large Lemon
2 Blackberries (optional)

Cut the small watermelon in half and scoop out all the insides and process the pulp in a food processor.  Save the rinds and place them in the freezer.  In a pot, place the processed pulp, sugar and the juice from the lemon.  Bring to a boil for 2-3 min and then remove and cool completely in a refrigerator.  Place the contents into an ice cream maker and follow the directions for sorbet.  After the watermelon lemonade is frozen, stir in the seeds from the blackberries (just cut the bumps off the core with a knife).  Place the contents into the frozen rinds and return to the freezer until frozen solid (3-5 hours).  Slice and serve frozen.  They will melt quickly!

Tropical Upside Down Cake

I’m a fan of the traditional pineapple upside down cake, however, I decided to make my own twist to it.  I turned it tropical.

My recipe originates from an old recipe in a 1960’s magazine which my Mother-in-Law used to make pineapple upside down cake.  I took the idea of using a cake mix and cast-iron skillet and made up the rest.

Start by using a cast-iron skillet.  The one pictured here is an 8″.  There are two options for this recipe.  The reason I use the 8″ is because it fits on most standard cake plates and serving platters; however, this recipe will give you left over mix when using the smaller pan.  (Not quite enough left over to make 2, but almost.)  If you use the 10″ skillet the recipe works perfectly, but then your cake won’t fit on a plate (unless you happen to have an over-sized one.)  So pick your poison.

Put the butter, sugar, and fruits into the skillet:

Saute until soft (similar to the consistency of Bananas Foster if you have ever made it before).  Come to think of it…I should have put a shot of rum in here!  I’ll have to try it next time!  After the fruits are cooked, remove about 1/4 of the mixture, otherwise it might be too gooey…or maybe you might like it that way, it’s up to you.

Meanwhile, mix the cake mix as per the directions and pour the mix on top to about 2/3 full.

Bake in a 350 degree oven for about20 minutes.  The top should feel springy.

Take it out and let it cool.  Afterwards, invert and that’s it!  Super simple!

Tropical Upside Down Cake
1/4 Cup Butter
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
1 Cup Pineapple Chunks
1 Banana (sliced)
1/2 Mango (peeled, pitted and in chunks)
1 Yellow or Butter Cake Mix (you can alternatively make one from scratch)
Required Mix Ingredients
8″ or 10″ Skillet

Preheat the oven to 350.  Melt the butter, sugar and fruit together and saute until the fruit is soft.  Meanwhile prepare the cake mix as directed.  Poor the cake mix on top until the pan is 2/3 full.  If using a 8″ skillet, remove a small portion of the fruit mixture before adding the cake mix.  You will have left over portions of each.  If using a 10″ skillet, use all the fruit and mix.  Place the cake in the oven.  For 8″ bake for about 20 minutes until the top is springy.  For a 10″ it will take closer to 35 minutes.  Remove the cake from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes.  Invert on a plate and enjoy!