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Presidential peach cobbler

President-elect Barack Obama praised it, and now you can, too.

President-elect Barack Obama praised it, and now you can, too.

During a one-time gig as a food critic on a public television restaurant review show years ago, the next president raved about the peach cobbler served at a diner in his Chicago neighbourhood.

“I do have to put in a plug for their peach cobbler, which people tend to gobble up pretty good,” Obama said of the dessert at Dixie Kitchen and Bait Shop.

That 2001 episode of Check Please! never aired, but with interest in all things Obama surging, the tapes recently resurfaced. Dixie Kitchen owner Carol Andresen said the cobbler is served with whipped cream, but vanilla ice cream works well, too.

“It's a wonderful burst,” she said in a telephone interview. “Even though I knew this film was in the can and had been in the can for eight years, I was hoping that it would show up at some point.”

Andresen said the Obamas were regulars and that the president elect's favourite dessert was the cobbler.

Unlike most cobblers, which often have crumb or biscuit toppings, the Dixie Kitchen cobbler is topped with a woven pastry crust, which is made daily at the restaurant.

Dixie Kitchen and Bait Shop Peach Cobbler


INGREDIENTS:
Filling
• 3.75 l (15 cups) frozen peaches (about seven 284-g/10-oz bags), thawed and drained
• 375 ml (1 1/2 cups) granulated sugar
• 50 ml (1/4 cup) packed brown sugar
• 45 ml (3 tbsp) all-purpose flour
• 2 ml (1/2 rounded tsp) cinnamon
• 2 ml (1/2 tsp) nutmeg
• 175 ml (3/4 cup) peach juice (juice drained from the frozen peaches is fine)
• 50 ml (1/4 cup) butter, cut into small pieces

Crust
• 500 ml (2 cups) all-purpose flour
• 5 ml (1 tsp) salt
• 150 ml (2/3 cup) shortening
• 50 ml (1/4 cup) butter, cut into small pieces
• 75 to 125 ml (1/3 to 1/2 cup) ice water

METHOD:

Heat oven to 190 C (375 F). Lightly coat a 3.5-l (9-by-13-inch) baking pan with cooking spray.

Filling
Arrange peaches in an even layer in prepared baking pan. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together granulated sugar, brown sugar, flour, cinnamon and nutmeg. Whisk in peach juice until smooth. Pour mixture over peaches. Sprinkle butter over top. Set aside.

Crust
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour and salt. Add shortening and butter, then use a pastry blender or gloved hands to work them into dry ingredients until mixture forms pea-sized lumps.

Slowly add water, adding enough and mixing only until dough holds together. Do not overmix.

Place dough between 2 sheets of parchment paper. Roll out dough into a rectangle slightly large than baking pan and about 5 mm (1/4 inch) thick.

Remove top sheet of parchment paper. The dough then can be cut into strips and woven into a crust over cobbler (this is the method preferred by Andresen).

For an easier crust, invert crust onto baking pan and carefully peel off parchment paper. Trim crust to fit just inside edge of pan.

Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour or until the crust is golden brown. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Makes 10 servings.

 
 
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