Cobblers originated in the British and American colonies. English settlers were unable to make their beloved suet pudding due to lack of ingredients and cooking equipment, so instead covered stewed fruit with a layer of uncooked plain biscuits, creating a ‘cobbled’ effect. This version is perfect to celebrate beautiful British strawberries, soaked in that classic summer tipple, Pimm’s.
Pimm’s & strawberry cobbler
- 800 g ripe strawberries
- 1 vanilla pod
- 1 orange
- 40 g soft brown sugar
- 40 ml Pimm's
- vanilla ice cream , to serve
- 50 g whole almonds
- 100 g self-raising flour
- 50 g caster sugar
- 100 g unsalted butter , chilled
- Preheat the oven to 240ºC/475ºF/gas 9.
- Hull the strawberries, halve any larger ones, and place them all in a 25cm baking dish.
- Halve the vanilla pod lengthways, scrape out the seeds and add to the strawberries (save the empty vanilla pod and pop in a jar of sugar for a lovely flavour).
- Finely grate in the orange zest and brown sugar, tossing gently to combine, then pour in the Pimm’s.
- Place the dish in the oven, reduce the temperature to 190ºC/375ºF/gas 5 and cook for 10 minutes, or until the fruit is soft but still holding its shape.
- Meanwhile, make the topping. Blitz the almonds in a food processor until fine, then tip in the flour, sugar and 1 pinch of sea salt. Cut the butter into cubes, add to the food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
- Add about 2 tablespoons of water and pulse again until it comes together into a firm dough.
- Remove the strawberries from the oven, gently mixing and scraping around the edges to collect any bits that are catching, then use a tablespoon to dollop 12 big spoonfuls of dough on top of the fruit.
- Return the dish to the oven for about 20 minutes, until bubbling and golden on top. Serve with vanilla ice cream, if you like.