Friday, April 22, 2011

Strawberry Cobbler -- The Perfect Spring Dessert!

Over the past 3 years of making desserts at the Glass Onion, I have learned that folks love cobbler! I think it is just the ultimate homey, soul-satisfying sweet.

Recently, I have been making Strawberry Cobbler with gorgeous South Carolina berries, and it seems the perfect spring dessert topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

Why not make some this weekend? Or come enjoy some at the GO today -- it's on the menu!

Seasonal Fruit Cobbler

Few desserts are as comforting as cobbler. You might as well be sitting at grandma's house wrapped up in a hand-knit afghan... Seriously, cobbler is that delicious and surprisingly easy to make. Use whatever fruit is in season, such as blackberries or blueberries in the summer, and apples in the fall. If you are using a fruit like apples or peaches, simply peel and slice them into manageable pieces. Serve this straight from the oven with vanilla ice cream, and you are sure to be everyone's best friend.

1 1/4 cups self-rising flour
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces, then softened
¾ cup buttermilk

Whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Add the butter and work into the dry ingredients, rubbing together with your hands, until the mixture resembles sand. Add buttermilk and stir to combine.

Softened butter, for pan
4 cups seasonal fruit, such as berries, apples, or peaches
¼ cup sugar
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon corn starch
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Combine all of the filling ingredients in a large bowl; stir to combine. Transfer to baking dish. Top the fruit with large spoonfuls of the batter. (The batter does not need to cover the fruit entirely; it will expand during the baking process.) Bake for about 1 1/2 hours, until the top is golden brown and the dough has cooked through. If top becomes too brown and dough still needs to cook more, cover with foil. Serve with vanilla ice cream!

Yield: 8 to 10 servings

Friday, April 15, 2011

Deviled Eggs -- Harbinger of Spring!

Deviled eggs are on my mind. Maybe it's due to our abundance of eggs now that spring has sprung. This ideal weather and relatively long days makes for happy chickens out at the local farms.

Of course, I could be daydreaming of deviled eggs because they will be featured on the cover of our cookbook, Glass Onion Classics. We just shot this last week with Charleston photographer John Smoak of Smoak Stack Studios, and now we are in the processing of choosing the most glamorous shot! The cookbook should be out in July and available at the restaurant and on our website --

Regardless, I propose embracing the deviled egg by making some yourself. Here's our version...

Jennie Ruth’s Deviled Eggs

These deviled eggs are a tribute to my partner Chris Stewart's grandmother, Jennie Ruth. She was an inspiration to his cooking with her classic Southern ways, and here you see that tradition shining through. We do add some GO flair to this recipe with Chris's Thunder Sauce (a sweet pepper relish), but plain old sweet pickle relish works just fine. In fact, that's what Jennie Ruth used! (If you live in the Charleston area we do sell our Thunder Sauce at the restaurant right next to the delicious farm eggs!)

Read Jennie Ruth's story in our earlier blogs.

6 large eggs
2 ½ tablespoons Thunder Sauce, or sweet pickle relish
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 tablespoon yellow mustard
1 ½ teaspoons hot sauce

Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Add eggs; boil for 14 minutes. Have a bowl of ice water ready. Transfer eggs to this ice bath. Once cool, remove from water and peel. Slice eggs in half lengthwise and carefully remove the yolks. Add the yolks, Thunder Sauce (or pickle relish), mayonnaise, yellow mustard, and hot sauce to the bowl of a blender or food processor; run until smooth. Alternatively, combine these ingredients in a medium bowl and work together using a fork until relatively smooth. Spoon into the whites.

YIELD: 12 Deviled Eggs

P.S. You can make your own sweet pickle relish by pureeing some of our Housemade Pickles (see recipe below) in a blender or food processor.

Housemade Pickles

My partner Chris refers to these as "Holy Crap! Those Are Good Pickles." The pickles really are outstanding, and on top of that, they are super easy to make. You should make these all summer long when local cucumbers are dirt cheap and delicious. At the GO, we serve them as a side, and we also puree them for homemade pickle relish. They have just the perfect amount of sweetness to seduce the palate without overwhelming it.

5 medium cucumbers, peeled on 3 sides and sliced ¾-inch thick
½ medium sweet onion, thinly sliced
1/2 medium red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 small carrot, peeled and thinly sliced into rounds
½ cup kosher salt
4 cups cider vinegar
4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1 teaspoon mustard seed
½ teaspoon celery seed
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes

Combine cucumbers, onion, pepper, carrot, and salt in a large bowl or storage container. Let sit for one hour. Rinse thoroughly with cold water. Return to a large bowl or storage container.

Combine remaining ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil. Pour liquid over vegetables, cover, and refrigerate. Refrigerate overnight before serving.

YIELD: About 2 quarts

P.P.S. We also believe our deviled eggs stand out because of the eggs themselves. They come from the happy hens of Celeste and George Albers. See their mobile chicken coop and the girls themselves!