In publication since 1991, Wrangler News is distributed free every other Saturday to more than 18,000 homes in the Kyrene Corridor area of South Tempe and West Chandler, and is supported by local and regional advertisers.

  Search past and present issues of the Wrangler
    Site search Web search    
   powered by


Classifieds Contact Us Links Media Kit Make a Payment Previous Issues

Discerning Diner:
It's a berry good season
By Elan Head

October 8, 2005

I am just back from a couple of weeks in New Mexico, where I have been eating chiles rellenos and raspberries.

Not necessarily together, of course. But fall in New Mexico is a great time for green chiles and raspberries both, and it takes a lot of either one to get sick of them.

Raspberries grow wild in certain high mountains in New Mexico, as they do in Arizona. If there’s a better way to spend your time in the Southwest than raspberry-picking with a good four-wheel-drive, I don’t know about it.

The timing is tricky, however, because these marvelous wild berries have a brief and unpredictable season. And in dry years, or in otherwise infelicitous periods of weather, they barely appear at all.

Our raspberry-farming neighbors in Apache Creek, New Mexico, tell us that this has not been a particularly productive year for raspberries in that neck of the woods.

But that didn’t stop me from buying as many as they could sell me. These fragile, labor-intensive fruits are a terrifically good deal if you can buy them on the farm, but they’re worth shelling out for in stores, too — just inspect the berries carefully for mold first.

I like raspberries fresh with heaps of whipped cream (which I’ve been flavoring with NAVAN, the new vanilla-infused cognac from the makers of Grand Marnier).

They’re also delicious added to muffins or scones. Rinse your berries and toss them lightly with flour to absorb excess liquid, then fold them into your batter as carefully as possible. They’re going to get a little crushed — that’s OK.

Raspberries are delicious with apples, and raspberries and apples make a great crisp. For the topping, pulse together six tablespoons of butter, ½ cup flour, ¾ cup light brown sugar and a generous pinch of salt in a food processor.

When the butter is in small pieces, add one cup of rolled oats and pulse to combine. (You can double this recipe and freeze any extra.)

Toss together three cups of peeled, sliced apples; one pint of raspberries; and a few tablespoons of sugar. Put the fruit in a buttered baking dish and spread the oatmeal mixture over it. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes. Then remove the foil and bake until the apples are soft and the topping is crisp, another 20 minutes or so.

Raspberry crisp is always terrific, but I’m recently enamored of raspberry cobbler, which I made over my vacation with two pints of gorgeous Apache Creek raspberries.

Here’s what I did:

I rinsed the berries and blotted them dry with paper towels, then tossed them in a buttered baking dish with a scant ¼ cup sugar and a few drops of almond extract.

Then, I sifted together one cup of flour, ¾ teaspoon baking powder, ¼ teaspoon baking soda, a pinch of salt and one tablespoon sugar. I used my fingers to crumble three tablespoons of cold butter into the flour, then gently stirred in a mixture of one beaten egg yolk, ¼ cup buttermilk and a few more drops of almond extract.

When I had a shaggy dough, I pinched off walnut-sized pieces of it and scattered them over the fruit. I sprinkled the dough with sugar, then baked the cobbler at 375 degrees for about 40 minutes, until the dough was crusty and the raspberries were bubbling. (Surprisingly, I didn’t miss cornstarch in this recipe; the juice from the raspberries soaked deliciously into the underside of the biscuits.)

The inspiration for this recipe comes from an Eric Goodman story in a back issue of Saveur Magazine. Goodman scatters sliced almonds over the cobbler as well, which sounds like a good idea for me. Either way, it’s the perfect Sunday breakfast.

Happy fall!


web site hit counter

Calendar | Classifieds | Contact UsHome | Make a Payment | Media Kit | Online Advertising | Online Pages | Previous Issues | Submit Your Ad

Copyright © 2005 Wrangler News




Hurricane Relief Fund

Donate now to the American Red Cross Hurricane 2005 Relief Fund.