About twice a month, our resident Chef BigFatPanda puts together his amazing step-by-step, photo-filled posts where he and Chef Mickey show you their adventures in the kitchen cooking up Disney goodies! Today, Chef Big Fat Panda’s DIY Disney Recipes brings us a gorgeous sweet treat! Take it away, Chef!
Hello again! Chef BigFatPanda here with a truly wonderful, easy to make recipe.
I don’t consider myself a pastry or dessert expert by a long shot, but after making this little gem, I certainly want to aim for it. By this time next year, I likely will have posted enough Disney sweets that I will be more comfortable with these delectables.
So, coming off of a less than stellar Chili recipe a few weeks ago, I am so glad I opted for this next adventure. Today, I am presenting you with a Peach Cobbler from Chef Mickey’s Village Restaurant at the Disney Village Marketplace.
But Chef Mickey’s is at the Contemporary! you may exclaim. Some history is in order here:
I believe that when the Village Marketplace first opened or was renamed in the 80’s, the restaurant we now know as the Rainforest Café was the Disney Village Restaurant. I remember going here with my Mom for a very pleasant dinner. Some years later… and it’s hard to find specifics… it became Chef Mickey’s Village Restaurant. It was not uncommon to see Chef Mickey roaming the dining room, although I don’t remember it advertised as a full character experience. I do remember that if it was your birthday, Mickey himself would bring you a cake that appeared to float within a basket held up by balloons. If anyone has any hard facts about the years this took place, I would love to take a trip back in time. I researched this on the internet but found too many conflicting reports to print here as fact. I just remember the restaurant was a great little respite from the bustling shopping and varied nightlife. (Editor’s Note: George, fill in the details if you’ve got ‘em!)
Okay – so this recipe wowed me! Really. It was like Christmas. I mean, it tasted like the holidays. Then again, I think Cinnamon reminds me of the holidays, but this was a few notches above that.
As usual, the recipe’s instructions will be bolded for easy reference should you wish to print this out and skip my commentary. It’s not nice to do that, but since I won’t know, no feelings hurt!
You will need:
2 ½ cups sliced Peaches (canned and drained)
2 teaspoons Apricot Brandy
2 teaspoons of Unsalted Butter
2 teaspoons of Vanilla Extract
1 teaspoon Cinnamon
½ cup of Sugar
2 teaspoons of Lemon Juice
½ teaspoon Nutmeg
1 tablespoon Cornstarch
2 teaspoons Water
½ pkg of Pie Dough or 1 ready made Pie Shell
You may already have many of these ingredients. I opted not to purchase unsalted butter as I had fresh lightly salted already in the fridge. Apart from that, and maybe adding a bit more Brandy, I stuck to the recipe!
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
The recipe has the next few steps as one long drawn out step. To make this more manageable, allow me to split it up.
2. In a 2 quart saucepan, add peaches, brandy, vanilla, butter, cinnamon, sugar, lemon juice and nutmeg. Bring to a Boil.
Apart from the fact that they don’t instruct you on what type of peaches to use, this is a very straightforward recipe. I chose to use one can of peaches in water and one can of peaches in light syrup.
I think this was a good choice. It was definitely sweet, but it’s a cobbler and I was expecting it to be sweet. I bet you could also use fresh peaches as well. Just make sure they are drained before mixing these ingredients together.
Avoid burning the mix or bringing it to a fast boil. Medium heat with a bit of time will do the trick and allow the flavors to marry. Wait till you smell this simmering. It’s too easy to use my now patented “peachy vigor” slogan on this recipe so suffice to say it smells magical!
3. Add cornstarch mixed with water and cook until mixture thickens.
It’s a little tough to mix a tablespoon of cornstarch into 2 teaspoons of water without it wanting to stick to the sides of whatever you use to mix it in. Make sure you mix this BEFORE incorporating it into your now bubbling peach mixture. In about 2 minutes of cooking after the addition, it began to look more candy-like and glistening; it certainly had a nice thickening going on. You can always add a drop more of the cornstarch water mixture if you feel it needs a bit more thickening. Remember, it will also cook and thicken more upon baking.
4. Place Peach mixture in a deep dish pie plate and top with pie dough, crimping edges to seal in filling.
I pre-cut my ready-made pie dough using a paper dish, but if you look carefully at the pictures, I am embarrassed to say I underestimated the size. It still came out great but there was a crimp in my execution. (If you groaned at that, I understand. If you smiled, Thank you so much!)
5. Bake for 45 minutes or until crust is golden brown.
At around 35 minutes I was checking it every 2 minutes like a paranoid father waiting for his baby to be born. I didn’t want it to burn. At exactly 45 minutes, the crust was golden and flaky. It looked delicious.
As of this writing, I have not eaten the product you see in the pictures. I did make myself a smaller version on the side and it was just a piece of Disney heaven; the absolute epitome of a great cobbler. (Editor’s Note: I asked Chef BigFatPanda to show us a piece of the cobbler he made on the side so we could see the finished product, including how the filling sets — voila!)
I could see putting this mixture onto some Vanilla Ice Cream and making it with Pumpkin or other fruit. The recipe is classic, timeless, and lends itself to many creative ideas. I simply loved it if you couldn’t tell by now.
The reason I didn’t dig into the pie is because I plan to serve it live during the next InnerMouse vidcast. You can tune in live, weekly and also view past episodes at www.InnerMouse.com!
Please let me know your thoughts on this recipe and if you have tried it. I encourage everyone to try it as you’ll hit an almost assured home run with the friends and family that gobble it up. Until next time, thank you for allowing me into your kitchen and keep wishing upon those stars!
Thanks again, John! Remember, all, you can watch for Chef Big Fat Panda’s column posts right here! Who knows what he’ll make for us next time!
This post is part of the DisMarks Disney Blog Carnival! Check it out for more great Disney-related content and information.