Scratch or Shortcut: Summer Berry Cobblers

When I was growing up, cobblers were considered an everyday dessert, but cobbler today is now considered a beloved classic. In the South we are blessed with an abundance of summer fruits and berries, allowing us the opportunity to prepare many cobblers.  Southern cooks have traditionally been masters at pairing pie crust and biscuits with local ingredients to create all kinds of regional specialties, including cobblers.

I think a cobbler made with a flaky pie crust is the most traditional, but topping the fruit with a sweet rich biscuit dough is also a classic style. Our Martha White® Country Berry Cobbler recipe is topped with biscuits and the dough is enriched with sugar, butter and cream. The biscuits may be rolled, cut and placed on the fruit or made into a little softer dough and dropped from a spoon.

One of the easiest ways to make a cobbler is with a simple pourable crust like this Martha White® Berry Good Cobbler recipe. This batter, made with Martha White® Strawberry Flavored Muffin Mix, sugar and milk, is a breeze to stir up.

With an abundance of fresh fruits and berries available this season, it is the perfect time to treat your family and friends to a homemade cobbler.

Refreshing Key Lime and Macadamia Bars

Several years ago I was working on some recipes for summer entertaining and decided I wanted to include a bar cookie. First of all, let me just say that I’m a huge fan of bars. They are so easy to make. You don’t have to roll out, drop or shape the dough and they are baked in one pan. No endless batches in and out of the oven.

The other thing about dessert bars is that many recipes combine layers of complementary textures and flavors. I especially love the ones that have a buttery crust layer pressed in the bottom of the pan topped with a sweet filling, like lemon. The result is a bar with a salty, buttery, crisp crust topped with a sweet, tart, creamy filling. Delicious!

Lemon is a good summer flavor, but I’ve already shared a good lemon bar recipe. Lime seems to offer a uniquely refreshing flavor to many summertime recipes from key lime pie to a glass of cold limeade. So why not simply convert our favorite lemon bar recipe to a lime bar by using lime juice in the filling and macadamias in the shortbread crust? Key Lime and Macadamia Bars are one of my favorite summer desserts and I’m happy to share it with you.

Do you have a favorite bar cookie that you like to make?

Summer Fun in the Kitchen

Cooking together is a great way to spend time as a family, and there are all kinds of things that kids can learn in the kitchen like reading, math and valuable life skills. Though summer cooking projects can be educational for kids of all ages, it’s mostly just fun to get in the kitchen and cook.

Chocolate Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes are the perfect dessert to make with kids. These delectable cupcakes take minutes to prepare and are easy to make using a convenient muffin mix. And there can be no more kid-friendly pairing than the beloved combination of peanut butter and chocolate.

The cupcakes are made with a Martha White® Chocolate Chocolate Chip Flavored Muffin Mix, sugar, sour cream and milk. The fun twist is a peanut butter cup. All you have to do is press the peanut butter cup into the center of each cupcake until even with the batter and bake. If you want, you can top off the cupcakes with the delicious peanut butter frosting.

The kids will love treating their friends to a fun snack that they have helped create. These cupcakes are sure to become a favorite this summer and all year long.