When my father-in-law was growing up, he was surrounded by a large extended family. His genuinely strong sweet mother raised him to be a caring family man. She had a large family and they spent a lot of time with her sisters and brothers. He remembers many visits to his Aunt Elsie’s home when he was a child. He visited and played with cousins while his mom (our “Grandma”) would visit with her brother and sister-in-law.
During the 1930’s and 1940’s, they grew food on their farm, including rhubarb. When they visited Aunt Elsie, she always tried to make a rhubarb cobbler for her nephew. Closer to home, his mom, my husband’s Grandma, made cobblers with rhubarb and other fruits that were available or in season. It was a special treat when they had fruit.
Grandma continued cooking and baking until she was near 90, and when she passed away at the age of 91, I began to hear more stories of the special memories Dad had of his times with his mom and aunt. Loving rhubarb myself (my grandmother also grew rhubarb), I began making the rhubarb cobbler for the family reunion and other times of the year. I was blessed to know Grandma for 12 years, and she immediately loved me as one of her own. I learned many recipes from her, but more importantly how she lived so honestly and unselfishly.
This recipe for Rhubarb Cobbler can be used with any fruit, fresh or frozen. If using frozen fruit, let it thaw so your baking time is about the same and the fruit is completely cooked.
Rhubarb Cobbler – or Blackberry, Peach, Strawberry, Berry, or Apple
Chopped Rhubarb (3-5 cups) – or other favorite fruit
1 cup sugar or splenda-type baking sugar substitute
Pats of Butter (I use 2-3 tablespoons)
1 cup biscuit mix (like Bisquick)
1/2 cup milk (adjust to make thinner than biscuit dough)
Preheat oven to 350-375 degrees. Mix rhubarb with sugar or sugar substitute (more or less to taste). Let the mixture sit for 30-60 minutes. If fruit is frozen, let sit longer until fruit is not frozen and has created a little juice. Place in casserole baking dish (sprayed with cooking spray) and cover with pats of butter. Mix biscuit mix and milk to make a crust batter and spoon on the top. Leave some space to allow juice butter to bubble up in the crust. Bake until crust is browned and rhubarb (fruit) is bubbly.
When rhubarb is back in season, I’ll update with photos of the actual rhubarb cobbler!
*Rhubarb can be hard to find, so you have to check with produce staff at grocery stores to see if they are getting any in. Check for the rhubarb to be crisp and not soft. The thinner stalks of rhubarb are usually the most tart. I like to use a combination of thick and thin stalks so the cobbler is not too tart for others. But if you like the very tart taste (I do!), you can decrease the sugar and add more rhubarb, especially thinner stalks.
*My grandmother used to make a rhubarb-strawberry cobbler, which combines the tart and sweet flavors. Just as berries can be mixed for a tasty cobbler, you can experiment with fruit mixtures you like.