Peach-Almond Cobbler

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There are a lot of remakes going on in Hollywood right now. Every week there’s a movie coming out either based on a book, or a remake of a classic older film, which isn’t exactly my favorite thing. I am definitely the girl that will read a book, go to see the movie, and spend the entire time making a mental list of everything that they changed. When I saw the movie version of “The Phantom of the Opera” I could even tell you when they had changed individual words in the songs. Yes, it bothers me. If something is good, just leave it alone. I see no reason why some snotty director or writer needs to come along and “make their mark” on a classic. Basically, I’m a big fan of the phrase “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

Therefore it surprised even me when I decided to change up what is considered a Southern classic – peach cobbler. If you live in the South and manage to go an entire summer without eating a gallon of this, then you obviously live in some sad, dark cave and you have my sympathy.

However, this weekend as I started slicing the peaches to make a cobbler for the 4th of July, I had an itching to try something a little different. I knew it was risky, I mean, how do you improve on peaches and sugar baked in a pie crust? You wouldn’t immediately think that things could get much better. However, I found that if you add a little oatmeal to the crust, and a little almond liquer to the peaches, cobbler can actually achieve new heights in perfection. I guess sometimes a remake can be better than the original.

Peach – Almond Cobbler

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This crust recipe was tweaked from one that Joy the Baker recently posted since I thought buttermilk & crust was too heavenly a combination to pass up. I forgot to add butter to the filling and it turned out fine, but feel free to add a couple of tablespoons on top of the filling just before covering with the crust. It’ll add a nice creamy texture.

1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter
¾ cup rolled oats
1 ¾ cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup cold buttermilk

5 cups peeled & sliced peaches** (about 7 large peaches)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons amaretto
2 tablespoons corn starch
½ teaspoon cinnamon

To make the crust:

In a food processor, grind up the rolled oats until they are the consistency of flour. In a large bowl, sift together the oat flour, all purpose flour, sugar and salt. Cut the butter into cubes and blend into the flours using the food processor (you can also work the butter in with your fingers.) Once the flour-butter mixture begins to resemble coarse crumbs, place it back in the bowl and make a well in the center of the mixture. Add in the cold buttermilk and mix together with your hands. (yes, this will be sticky)

Roll the dough onto a floured surface and form into a rough disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for at least an hour. It will last in the refrigerator for 3 days if you decide to make it ahead of time.

To make the cobbler:
**If you aren’t sure how to properly peel & slice peaches, here’s the trick – blanch them first, by placing the peaches in boiling water for 30 seconds and then moving them directly to ice water. The peels should now come right off, and they’ll slice more easily. I simply used a paring knife to slice pieces away from the core.

In a large bowl, mix together all of the filling ingredients. Place in your baking dish. Roll out the dough until it is roughly ¼ of an inch thick, and then place it over top of the baking dish. Trim away the edges, and then flute the crust along the top with your fingers. Be sure that the crust hangs a little over the edge and that you press it firmly to the baking dish, otherwise the filling may bubble over and drip into your oven – you can tell I experienced this a bit with mine.

Beat an egg and brush the top of the crust with the egg wash. Bake at 375 degrees F for 40 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown. Serve with vanilla ice cream – mmm-mmm!

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