Big Guy often comes up with menu ideas and while many times they include something I wouldn't be caught dead cooking or eating like tripe, tongue or other awful offal, when he saw the Tomato Cobbler in this month's Food Magazine he thought it would be great with oysters, so I gave in to his wishes.
Of course we had to come to a bit of a compromise (isn't that what marriage is all about), because he wanted to use the oysters as the topping instead of thyme flavored buttery biscuits. For me to give up anything resembling bread never mind biscuits is asking a lot never mind I have to admit oysters are one of the things I put on my awful list. Since his taste buds have adjusted to curry, peas and salmon, I figured mine could adjust to oysters.
Big Guy soaked the bi-valves in a combination of buttermilk and hot sauce for a few hours before treating them to a flour dredge, egg wash and panko crust. Fried for a few minutes a side until crisp on the ouside and creamy inside, they ended up looking like this.
As for the tomato cobbler, we've had a version of it here before way back last September and believe me, it is a keeper. This time, lovely diced vine ripened tomatoes are combined with sauteed onion, garlic, cayenne and fresh thyme, then hit a casserole along with cherry tomatoes and a topping of light, flakey, moist and delicious thyme flavored biscuits. An hour in the oven and an enticing aroma later, and here you go.
I stuck to my guns and managed to "enjoy" my modest helping of Big Guy's perfectly crisp and delicious oysters and Big Guy fulfilled his wish too. As you see, moderation took the back seat last night and the scale's telling the tale this morning; however, some things are just worth the excess. He said the combination of spicy, sweet, stewed tomatoes and crisp oysters was everything he had envisioned.
Just so you know since we're all about honesty here, I prefered the previous version of the cobbler, spiced up with pepper flakes, loaded with fresh basil and a cheesey biscuit topping. Hit this link and head to One Perfect Bite and you'll see why; however, this one was OK too.
I changed up last night's up by adding more cayenne, garlic and thyme along with a couple of teaspoons of Knorr's Tomato Bouillon, a popular item used in many Mexican kitchens that you may find in the ethnic foods section of your local supermarket (or follow the link to Amazon). It's a new addition to our pantry and certainly added a nice boost of tomatoey flavor and richness to the cobbler. I'll definitely be using it more often in other dishes, but be forewarned - it contains MSG so if you've a low tolerance level for the stuff or suffer from migraines, leave it out. Just sayin'.
Tomato Cobbler (from JBug’s Kitchen adapted from Food Magazine)
2 tablespoons butter
1 medium yellow onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons fresh thyme, chopped
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1-1/4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon brown sugar
2 teaspoons Knorr tomato bouillon (optional)
3 large vine ripened tomatoes, cut into 1 inch chunks
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups cherry tomatoes cut into halves
1 tablespoon olive oil
Over medium heat, melt butter in a sauté pan and add onion. Cook, stirring often until onion is transparent and starts to turn golden. Add garlic, thyme, cayenne pepper, salt, pepper, brown sugar and tomato bouillon and cook for an additional minute. Add diced tomatoes, bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes until tomatoes have softened and released some of their juices. Remove pan from heat, stir in flour and cherry tomatoes. Move mixture to a greased casserole dish. Drizzle with olive oil.
Preheat oven to 350.
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
2/3 cup milk
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, sugar, salt and pepper. Cut in cold butter using a pastry blender until mixture has coarse crumbs. Using a fork, mix together milk, mustard and thyme, then pour mixture over dry ingredients and toss lightly to incorporate. Do not over mix the dough. Drop dough in spoonfuls over the prepared tomato mixture and bake in preheated 350 oven for 50 to 60 minutes until topping is golden brown and mixture is bubbling. Let rest for 15 minutes before serving. Makes 6 servings.
A year ago - Onion and Smoked Salmon Tart
Two year's ago - Hunter Style Chicken
Three year's ago - Peach Blueberry Cake