I made these for the Seattle Bake Sale for Share Our Strength organized by Frantic Foodie (thanks Keren!). I had so much fun making pies in jars that I figured this was the perfect opportunity to bake something else in jars. This time I used half-pint wide mouth jars, a nice size for a bake sale.
(Half pint jars washed and drying.)
I used the blueberry cobbler recipe from Baking Illustrated. I was making 24 portions so the first time I tried to divide each recipe between 8 jars (making three total recipes worth). It was just enough that the blueberry mixture bubbled over each jar. Pretty, yes, but too sticky for a bake sale. So I made two batches of berries (each divided into 12 jars) and, at the suggestion of Scott, Official Cobbler Taster, I made three batches of biscuit topping (each divided into 8 jars). I might have thrown off the biscuit-to-fruit ratio, you may want to make two batches of each fruit and biscuits if you’re a purist.
(Look! The berry mixture didn’t boil up and spill over the tops this time!)
These are great for bake sales because the packing is an eye catcher. These are great for picnics because when you’re done you can put the top back on (containing the stickiness) until you get home and can wash them (blueberry is surprisingly easy to wash off). I have not yet tried to freeze and reheat these, but I suspect it wouldn’t work nearly as well as for the pie variant. I think dividing these among pint jars would work just as well, mmm, more blueberries.
The recipe, with notes on actually making it in jars, is below.
Seriously, the cornmeal added to the biscuit batter makes all the difference here. I might be biased, I [heart] cornmeal.
I call this mise en jars, I used the washed jars from the overflowing and sticky (but sooo worth it) test batch.
For each batch I used a 10-ounce package of frozen wild blueberries and, for the sake of economy, filled out the rest with locally grown (and gorgeous) frozen blueberries that are sold in 48-ounce bags.
The scent of these baked goods right here is amazing. I wish you could smell it through your browser.
I cut 3.25 inch diameter circles to lable the top of the jars and fit nicely between the layers of the screw on lids.
On the back of the label I listed things one might do with the leftover jar. My very first thought was using it as a vessel for the sipping of bourbon, all the other options took a bit more imagination to come up with.
Pro tip: keep the cardboard boxes the jars come packaged in, they make it nicely easy to deliver the finished goods. I was up late cutting out these circle labels, it was very much worth it.
Blueberry Cobbler in Jars
Recipe from Baking Illustrated, with notes for preparing for 24 half-pint, wide mouth jars by Megan Reardon, www.notmartha.org.
Baking these individual portions of blueberry cobbler in jars makes them handy for bringing to picnics, or for selling at bake sales which is what I did with these.
Filling (I made two batches)
- 1/3 cup (3.5 ounces) sugar
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- pinch ground cinnamon
- pink salt
- 6 cups (30 ounces) fresh blueberries, or 36 ounces frozen blueberries
- 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
Biscuit Topping (I made three batches)
- 1 cup (5 ounces) all-purpose flour (I used my BFF Sheperd’s Grain)
- 2 tablespoons stone-ground cornmeal
- 1/4 cup (1 3/4 ounces) sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, melted
- 1/3 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon (for sprinkling)
- 2 teaspoons sugar (for sprinkling)
If you’re baking these in 24 half-pint jars, I highly suggest (from experience, mind you) getting all your ingredients ready and mixed together (except the biscuit topping, then prep the dry ingredients separate from the wet ingredients as the recipe below indicates) ahead of time. I also highly suggest weighing or measuring out your frozen blueberries before letting them defrost as it’s far, far messier to do this when they are defrosted and have let off a bunch of juice that will stain your fingers, your counter top, your favorite comfy tank top and your kitchen towel. All this pertains especially, especially, if you’re waiting until 10:30 the night before to start baking.
1. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.
2. For the filling: Stir the sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, and salt together in a large owl. Add the berries and mix gently with a rubber spatula until evenly coated; add the lemon zest and juice and mix to combine. Divide evenly between 12 half-pint jars. Place jars on a rimmed cookie sheet (lined with foil, if you dislike washing oversized dishes the way I do). Bake until the filling i shot and bubbling, about 25 minutes, 30 if you’ve used frozen berries.
3. For the biscuit topping: Whisk the flour, cornmeal, 1/4 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl to combine. Whisk the melted butter, buttermilk, and vanilla together in a small bowl. Mix the 2 teaspoons sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl and set aside. One minute before the berries come out of the oven, add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients; stir with a rubber spatual until just combined and no dry pockets remain.
4. To assemble and bake the cobbler: remove the berries from the oven; increase the oven temperature to 425 degrees. (NOTE! It’s easy to overlook the immediately preceding instruction about increasing the oven temperature. Please back up and re-read until you walk to your oven and raise the temperature.) Divide each batch of dough into eight equal pieces and place each one in a jar on top of of the hot blueberries. (Heating the berries like this first helps the dough cook from both above and below.) Sprinkle each mound of dough with the cinnamon sugar. Bake until the filling is bubbling and the biscuits are golden brown on top and cooked through, 15 minutes, maybe 20 if you’re using frozen blueberries. Cool on a wire rack 20 minutes before serving or if you’re planning on taking them somewhere cool until just sort of warm before placing the lids on. (I let them sit overnight, just draped with sheets of parchment. I think that worked out ok. At least, I hope that worked out ok.)
You might also be interested in:
Pies baked in jars, I made these a few years back. These are good to freeze before baking, then you can move them straight from the freezer into the oven, voila, a little bit of pie (almost) on demand. Also good if you’re baking for a large group and would like to assemble them a week or two in advance.