We can all agree that having cake for breakfast is a truly great thing, right? And having pie for breakfast is equally wonderful, of course. I tend to half-pray that dinner guests won't finish off the peach and crème fraîche pie I make the minute peaches are back in season so I can eat it, sitting in the sunshine, first thing the next morning. I've made it a habit the last couple years to have carrot cake on the morning of my birthday, because then I know it's going to be a good day. I always wake up early the day after Thanksgiving to make sure I can get some of the leftover pumpkin pie first thing. There's something sweetly indulgent about slicing into a perfect circle of sugar and butter and flour and fruit, and easing out a triangle to pair with your coffee or tea. It's a break from the usual cereal or toast or eggs, and it's a treat.
But I think there's something that's even better than breakfast pie or cake, and that's cobbler. Think about it: cobbler, at it's best, is basically fruit, cooked down to a deep, rich jam, topped with substantial plops of what's more or less buttery, dense biscuit dough. Cobbler recipes are extremely forgiving, and don't require much work or even much time. There's no having to make the crust ahead, or using three different bowls for all the different components, or making special trips to the grocery store for tapioca.
It's a perfect dessert, certainly—especially if you add some ice cream. But it's maybe an even better breakfast the next morning. On its own, it's basically biscuits and jam, but better. With a satisfying dollop of Greek yogurt, think of it as shortcake, just slightly healthier. It's just as good heated up as it is eaten at room temperature.
And it's such a simple recipe, you could even make it in the morning. It's easy enough.
Here's the simplest, foolproof recipe for strawberry cobbler, adapted from this one on Food52.
Easy Strawberry (or Anything) Cobbler
Photo by msheldrake via Getty Images
Ingredients for the fruit
5 cups strawberries, leaves removed and quartered, or enough to provide a hearty layer on the bottom of the baking vessel you're using. (You can use whatever fruit you'd like here. Really.)
1 tablespoon lemon juice (or about half a juicy lemon's worth)
Cinnamon (to taste, I like a lot)
Brown sugar (to taste, but probably around 2 tablespoons)
Ingredients for the topping
1 cup white sugar
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt (Maldon salt gives a nice crunch)
1 egg, lightly beaten
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted (browned butter would be amazing here, too), plus more for prepping the baking dish
How to Make It
Preheat the oven to 375°F and butter your oven-proof baking dish. (This is exactly the right time to use your cast iron pan. My friend and I had good luck with a square, 10.5 inch cast iron skillet.)
Combine the fruit with the lemon juice, cinnamon, and brown sugar, and pour into the prepped baking dish. (If you don't feel like dirtying another bowl, you can mix this all in the baking dish.)
Mix flour, sugar, and salt for the topping, and then pour in the lightly beaten egg. Combine until crumbly, then spread on top of the fruit.
Drizzle the melted butter over the topping.
Put the cobbler-to-be in the oven, and let it bake for 45 minutes, or until golden brown and bubbling.