Mini Blackberry Cobblers

When I think of blackberry cobbler, Cynthia’s Restaurant (now defunct) on 3rd in Los Angeles comes to mind. Like many, I used to frequent the restaurant just for their famous blackberry cobbler, however, the owner was not too keen on diners who didn’t eat their entire meal (appetizer, entree and dessert) at the restaurant. The problem was, aside from their boneless fried chicken and their cobbler, everything else was mediocre at best. The restaurant survived as long as it did because of their blackberry cobbler, but in the end, their one famous desert could not save the restaurant. When the restaurant closed their doors, I was pretty bummed.

This easy blackberry cobbler recipe is a tribute to Cynthia’s version. The mini cobblers are made in tall, individual ramekins, and meant to be shared like the ones they served at the restaurant. My version has a crumble made with roasted, ground almonds and locally milled Sonora wheat flour, giving the dessert a nice nutty flavor. This recipe makes 3 mini cobblers either in 1 cup ramekins highlighting the berries or in shallow creme brûlée ramekins with a more even crumble-berry ratio. Either way, there is plenty of crumble topping for the cobblers. Also, you can substitute the blackberries with other berries or make mixed berry cobblers. Add your favorite vanilla ice cream on top, and you have a warm and cold comforting sweet dessert.

Mini Blackberry Cobblers

Yields: 3 mini cobblers (6 servings)

4 1/2 cups of fresh blackberries (washed and dried)
3 tablespoons of dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons of organic corn starch
2 teaspoon of lemon juice, freshly squeezed
1 recipe of crumble topping (recipe below)
Your favorite vanilla ice cream, for serving

1. Preheat the oven to 375 °.

2. Place blackberries in a medium mixing bowl. Add the brown sugar, corn starch, and lemon juice. Toss to coat the berries evenly.

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3. Divide the berries evenly among 3 ramekins (either the tall 1 cup ramekins or the shallow creme brûlée ramekins).

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4. Top the berries with a generous amount of crumble. You may have some crumble mixture left-over.

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5. Place the cobblers on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake for about 30-40 minutes. Check after 25 minutes. You want a nice golden brown crumble and the juices from the berries bubbling and overflowing. Remove from the oven and placed on a wire rack to cool for about 5 minutes.

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6. Serve warm with a large scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.

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Crumble Topping

3/4 cup of Sonora wheat flour or unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 cup of ground roasted almonds*
1/3 cup of dark brown sugar, packed
1/4 teaspoon of Kosher salt
5 tablespoons of cold unsalted butter, cut in 1/4″ cubes

1. In a medium bowl, add the flour, ground almonds, brown sugar, and salt. Stir well with a whisk or fork.

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2. Add the cold butter to the dry mixture. Using your clean hands, incorporate the butter into the dry mixture by rubbing them between your fingers. You should get nice little clumps of dough.

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3. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator until ready to use.

*To make the roasted ground almonds, place 2/3 cups of whole raw almonds on a baking sheet. Roast for about 7 minutes. Cool. Pulse in a food processor until you get a coarse ground texture. Measure out 1/2 cup for this recipe.

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